UNESCO Educates Rural Broadcasters on Anti-Ebola Messages

first_imgThough there are reports confirming a considerable reduction in the spread of the dangerous Ebola virus disease (EVD) at various treatment units ETUs), the government and its international partners are not taking the Ebola fight for granted.To contribute to the fight, UNESCO’s Monrovia office on October 22 and 23, 2014, trained over 40 community-based radio broadcasters.The two-day training, which was conducted in Gbarnga, Bong County, was held under the theme, “Enhancing Broadcasters’ Skills in the Fight against EVD.”The training, which was ‘intensive’ took into consideration several Ebola preventive measures, including the regular hand washing, avoiding over crowdedness, etc.The officer-in-charge (OIC) of Monrovia office, Stevenson Seidi, in his opening remarks on Wednesday underscored opportunities the training provided, because of the basic skills in the Ebola preventive messages relative to the rural communities in Liberia.According to Mr. Seidi, the idea to educate rural broadcasters, who are mainly managers of rural-based community radios, was to customize some of their anti-Ebola messages in their respective localities; how to develop those messages in their [own] languages; more importantly, to vet (scrutinize, evaluate) what sorts of messages they will put out on the radio for the listening audience.The training was held with the objective to enhance rural broadcasters’ skills in the presentation of EVD messages appropriately and professional; to develop EVD messages in common ‘Liberian’ English and local languages;   and to conduct a model presentation of EVD on radios with focus on the rural parts of the country.The training was also designed  to create community awareness and promote behaviorial change about the EVD and the risk factors, prevention and control in the community and to disseminate the risk factors and prevention messages of Ebola in the course of three months.Earlier, in his official opening remark, Deputy Information Minister for Technical Services, Robert W. Kpadeh, expressed gratitude to the crafters of the training, “because the exercise will propel the broadcasters to disseminate messages to prevent the spread of Ebola.He re-echoed government’s call on all to fight the EVD, and also assured the broadcasters that with the collective efforts in the fight, Liberia ill eventually prevail.”He meanwhile challenged the over the 40 participants to go out and serve as ambassadors by spreading their acquired knowledge to their various  audiences in the fight against Ebola.Participants were lectured individually by facilitators from IREX, UNICEF, WHO and facilitators from other professional areas.They learned about the importance of telling the Ebola story, which has now become a global issue.The participants were told to apply all necessary safety rules as they go about visiting some of the Ebola Treatment Units (ETUs), follow burial teams for interviews, etc.They also learned about the how the virus is transmitted; avoidance of contact with bodily fluids of anyone showing symptoms of the disease, among other things.Participants’ representative, Nyahn Flomo and the president for the Association of Liberia Community Radio (ALICOR) William Quire, expressed gratitude to UNESCO and the facilitators for the level of education they impacted unto the participants during the education training. The two managers called on UNESCO to strengthen the rural radio stations in several other areas, including funding, conducting listeners’ surveys and improving the level of anti-Ebola-related messages.The participants promised to share the acquired acknowledge from the training with their colleagues who did not have the opportunity to be part of the UNESCO training.    Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Over US$104.8M Needed for UNMIL Drawdown

first_imgThe Senate Committee on Defense, Security, Intelligence & Veterans Affairs, has reported to Senate plenary that the proposed UNMIL drawdown plan developed by the Government of Liberia and UNMIL covering the three fiscal periods of 2015-2018 will cost US$104,848,878.45, an amount which it concedes the government cannot handle alone. The report recognizes the need to lobby with immediate effect the country’s international partners for assistance. In its recommendation contained in the report read yesterday, the 15-member committee, headed by Lofa County Senator Stephen J.H. Zargo, noted that the 2015/2016 budget period is crucial as it is the period prior to UNMIL June 2016 drawdown, and that “the aggregate cost for this period is US$76,188.89.” “We therefore instruct that the Minister of Justice and chairman of the joint security report to Defense Committee in two weeks, as of today’s date with a realistic and achievable budget for consideration for this budget period, taking into consideration what the Justice Minister considered County/Regional Hot/Trouble spot or high threat zone approach,” the committee said.The committee further reported that during its engagement with national security institutions, it was discovered that some of them contribute considerably to the national budget while others whose budgetary allotments are far more than others, do not contribute.A case in point, according to the committee, is the Bureau of Immigration & Naturalization which in 2013-2014 contributed over US$3M to the national budget while the Liberia National Police could not produce any record to suggest that it contributed to the budget under the same period. “Therefore, we recommend that we allot based in part on institution’s contribution to the budget and in part on its strategic contribution.”During discussions leading to the recommendation, Justice Minister Cllr. Benedict Sannoh, in his capacity as chairman of the joint security, informed the meeting that he had convinced President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to include the UNMIL drawdown plan in the Post Ebola Recovery Plan and called for political will on the part of government for the UNMIL drawdown plan to succeed.Justice Minister Sannoh during the discussion reportedly clarified that the Government of Liberia’s plan for UNMIL drawdown would remain public.For his part, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Cllr. H. Varney Sherman, whose committee formed part of the meeting, encouraged the national security authorities to sufficiently publicize their activities, while Grand Bassa County Senator Jonathan Kaipay, advised that documents relating to the drawdown be provided to the Defense Committee, totally or in segments, considering their relevance and significance.In the same vein, Bomi County Senator Morris Saytumah encouraged the security authorities and the Executive Branch of Government to submit their budget in a timely manner in order to give the Legislature ample time to review them for consideration, a view shared by Gbarpolu County Senator Daniel F. Naatehn; while the security advisor to President Sirleaf encouraged continuous engagement with the people and economic empowerment of the youth and former combatants.Dr. H. Boima Fahnbulleh underscored the need to allay the fears and negative perceptions of the Liberian people in the face of the UNMIL drawdown saying there was no looming anarchy nor was the Liberian state on the brink of failure resulting from the departure of UNMIL.  The committee’s report is the aftermath of its meeting with Liberia national security actors held April 7, in the Conference Room of the Senate Pro Tempore. In attendance were heads of all national security institutions, including the Liberia National Police, Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization, Drugs Enforcement Agency, National Fire Service, Bureau of Correction and Rehabilitation, Armed Forces of Liberia, Ministers of Defense and Justice, and Security Advisor to the President of Liberia, among others.It may be recalled that last March, Grand Bassa County Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence informed her colleagues that unless some serious efforts were made to beef up the country’s national security prior to the conclusion of the UNMIL drawdown, the security of the country could be at risk, and therefore,  requested an urgent hearing in Executive session.The Grand Bassa lawmaker said such a meeting would require the participation of the heads of all security agencies, including the Defense Minister, the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of Liberia, the Police Director and the Chief of Immigration. It was based on Senator Lawrence’s concern that her communication was sent to the Committees on Defense, Intelligence and Veterans’ Affairs, and Judiciary, with the option to do further consultations and report to plenary within two weeks.Meanwhile, the plenary yesterday thanked the committee for its timely intervention and meeting with national security actors, and unanimously voted to adopt the recommendations contained in the report.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Illegal trade of foreign currency

first_imgDear Editor,Officials of the Bank of Guyana (BoG) and the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) need to be aware that the illegal trade of foreign currency appears to be very active among merchants and migrants from other countries, which may be a contributing factor to the reduced value of the Guyana dollar.Over the past month, I witnessed illegal activities first hand in two stores that I had only briefly visited.At one store on Regent Street, Georgetown, close to Regent Street, a Cuban national purchased several items which were paid for in US dollars.The goods, which were originally priced in Guyana dollars, were converted to US dollar equivalent at an exchange rate that was not aligned to those of the BoG, local commercial banks, or Cambios. Since I was next in line behind the Cuban customer, witnessing the transaction was inevitable. When my turn came to pay for my purchase, I curiously asked the female money collector, who appeared to be of Chinese origin working in concert with some persons of suspected Indian or Bangladeshi origin, if I could pay in US dollars too. Her curt response was, “Not for you! Not for you”.I continued my probe by asking her if she had a Cambio Licence and she responded in dismissive fashion by saying that she did not understand me. I left the store without desiring to press the matter further.The next occurrence of this type of activity was observed again on Regent Street, but closer to Albert Street, in a hardware store. A group of Spanish-speaking men and women entered the store under the guidance of a Guyanese man.They were escorted to a section of the store where a man of Chinese origin, who apparently owns or manages the store, proceeded to purchase sums of US currency from the foreigners. I looked around in the store, then went outside, inquisitively searching for any sign that the store operated Cambio services. However, there was none.I also heard stories from usually reliable sources about a store on Robb Street where mainly Cubans and Venezuelans are selectively invited to enter during the early morning hours. The grilled doors are then closed to permit the foreign nationals to conduct purchases using US dollars.If this is the usual and daily practice by shop and store owners who bypass, evade, and subvert the established regulatory financial system in Guyana, the reduced value of local currency compared to the US dollar is merely a symptom of a much larger problem that officials need to extensively investigate in order to restore order, the value, and stability of the Guyana dollar.Yours faithfully,Orette Cuttinglast_img read more

Blocked creek responsible for Rainbow City, Kara Kara floods

first_imgChairman of the Environmental Committee within the Linden Mayor and Town Council (LM&TC), Wainwright Bethune, has concluded that blockage to the Hymara creek at Mackenzie, Linden, Region 10 (Upper Demerara/Berbice) was mainly responsible for the recent severe flooding suffered in Rainbow City and Kara Kara communities.In April, residents of the said communities were severely affected during the heavy downpours. Bethune said that in an effort to bring relief, work has been ongoing at sections of the Hymara creek, which was blocked due to severe garbage build-up and thick vegetation:“The flooding in the Kara Kara, Rainbow City area was due mainly to blockages in the Hymara creek. What we did, we looked at the entire area, some parts of the creek had to be desilted and the other areas it was basically heavy vegetation, garbage that caused a restriction of flow of the water.”However, while relief came to many, some residents had complained of still being affected during heavy downpours. The Environmental Committee chairman indicated that he was unaware of such additional complaints by residents.He said he was satisfied with the desilting work, adding that some of the vegetation had also been successfully removed. Bethune said Councillor Lennox Gasper of the area is also very active in ensuring that relief and assistance come to the areas.“We would have recognised that there was an increase in flow (of water), when the vegetation and garbage were removed and there were a lot of areas where we see residents putting things like fridge doors and all of this caused some restriction of the flow of the water and when we completed that job we were comfortable that we had a free flow of water going into the Demerara River,” the chairman stated.The Rainbow City and Kara Kara areas have been affected by severe flooding over the years, with the blame being directed at blockage to the Hymara Creek and activities of bauxite mining company, Bosai Minerals Group Guyana Incorporated.last_img read more

‘Manufacturing Sector Essential for Economic Growth’

first_imgThe Minister of Posts and Telecommunications, Dr. Fredrick B. Nrokeh foresees the economic viability of the country as hanging on the focus of the government to making the manufacturing sector the degree of economic growth that the  country truly deserved.According to him, Liberia will only experience dramatic economic growth when the manufacturing sector becomes fully functional, because, “the country is blessed with enormous resources that can be transformed into finished products for both domestic and foreign consumption.Minister Norkeh spoke over the weekend during program marking the launch of the Panzsir Cosmetics LLC in Brewerville, Outside Monrovia on the theme, “Soft, Sweet, Shinny, Skin is here to Stay.”He said the economy of the country will certainly experience dramatic economic growth when the manufacturing sector is fully functional, because, according to him, Liberia is blessed with enormous resources that can be transformed into finished products for domestic and foreign consumption.Manufacturing, he asserted, will help to reduce cost to consumers making the country’s trade and commerce a competitive market.“I am of the conviction that no matter what type of economic model Liberia may wish to apply, development of the manufacturing sector must be considered as a critical arm for the economic.Minister Norkeh pointed out that no developed or under developed country has been successful in terms of dramatic economic growth without huge investments in the manufacturing sector, especially where raw materials are in abundance.”As a government, he said, they need to prioritize sector with greatest potential for economic growth, which in his mind, are priorities that are necessary for the development and sustainability of the manufacturing sector.Launching the products on the Market earlier, the Vice President of Liberia, Joseph Nyumah Boakai lauded the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Kokpor Daynuah for such a “farsighted innovation in producing cosmetic products in the country.”Veep Boakai said it was important for Liberians to produce their owned products in the country which, according to him, will help create jobs for the jobless youth. “I am surprised to see a young and determined man producing cosmetics in Liberia—“Made in Liberia.” This signifies Liberians readiness to take over their owned economy.”He said the products that are made in the country by a young Liberian means a lot for us, “because the young man has used his knowledge to bring about technology that will benefit everyone, especially the products made in the cosmetic industry.”VP Boakai used the platform and encouraged other young Liberians to emulate the CEO of Panzsir Cosmetics Company to do likewise. He then promised Panzsir’s CEO that he would use his office to communicate with stakeholders, especially the Ministry of Commerce, and other business partners to promote the product on the market.The Panzsir Company, Mr. Daynuah said, is a dream comes true because it is the first company to manufacturer of beauty products in Liberia.During his busiest time in his career, Mr. Daynuah said, his targeted goal was to become the first to manufacture high quality personal care products in the country that Liberians can be pride of and to call it their owned.Mr. Daynuah, a Liberian Chemists and entrepreneurs officially started Panzsir Company about five months ago in the mist of lots of difficulties including the absence of electricity.“I used generator to run the largest equipment. With all these difficulties I still believe strongly that Liberia is the best place to make business.”Manufacturing Panzsir here, he said, will add value to crops such as coconut and palm trees which will eventually create jobs for villagers and the entire agriculture supply chain.Panzsir, according to Mr. Daynuah, will soon be investing in a grinding machine on a plantation in Sinoe, as well as meeting coconut oil demand, and create jobs for villages in Sinoe County.Panzsir other goals are to also build a plant in Ganta that will be able to manufacture various personal care products such as styling gel, body wash, shampoo, soap, hair grease and amongst other.Panzsir was developed in the United States of America as the first company that manufactured personal care products in Liberia. Few of the products are interestingly are handy-work (fabricated) by Mr. Daynuah and coworkers’ hands.The company pride itself in using Liberians research and development of a product that caters to the needs of the customers.“We have worked diligently to provide our consumers with products that are dependable and made with highest quality,” Chemist Daynuah boasted.   Meanwhile, Mr. Daynuah said Panzsir’s success depends on the Liberian people to ensure that they take ownership of their market by buying the “Made in Liberia” Products.He however called on the Ministry of Commerce, Finance, National Investment Commission (NIC) and the media to promote Panzsir on the Liberian market.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

We-Care Foundation Launches, “Waiting Out The Ebola Crisis” Campaign

first_imgShare this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) We-Care, Mr. Weah said,  will also address the immediate  need including the dissemination of all necessary awareness and or sensitization that are desperately needed to preventthe the spread of the disease.The packages will provide information on how to keep safe from Ebola disease, and will at the same time, keep the kids safe away from streets and coming in contact with crowds. It will also keep the children busy with reading and learning as the country await the end of the Ebola crisis at which time schools will open.We-Care presently works in the areas of training teachers, writers illustrators, librairians, establishing librairies, and publishing culturally relevant children books through its Reading Library Program.The entity operates the We- Care library that is located Carey and Gurley streets with its internet facilities. As a result of the the Ebola crisis, library is closed to the public.It recent distribution is parts of the fight to defeat Ebola from Liberia.   We-Care Foundation, a not-for-profit local education entity recently launched its Ebola response campaign under the theme, “Waiting Out the Ebola Crisis.”At the launch in the Township of West Point, the Foundation distributed over 100 parcels of assorted education materials, which included flyers depicting the danger of the Ebola virus disease (EVD), among other dangers associated with the disease.During the launch, We-Care executive director, T. Michael Weah, explained among other things that the program geared towards the distribution of over 10,000 packages containing Rbola prevention fliers, bumper stickers, books, copybooks, pencils, etc.“This is our direct response to the schools and the school-going age children though all learning institutions have remained closed, the need for the students to keep learning as well as wait for the containment of the EVD, Mr. Weah told the school-going age children as he distributed the items among them.  According to him, the distribution exercise targets over 10,000 households in all poverty-stricken communities across the country. last_img read more

US Pledges to Contain Ebola Outbreak in W. Africa

first_imgThe President of the United States of America, Barrack Obama, has promised that the United States (US) is poised to provide technical, material and financial support to help eradicate Ebola from Liberia and the sub-region.President Obama reaffirmed his country’s commitment to stand by Liberia and the West African sub-region in the fight against the deadly Ebola virus disease. The US leader made the commitment when he spoke with Vice President Joseph Boakai, Sr., Tuesday night at a White House where a dinner was being held with African leaders attending the U.S. – Africa Leaders Summit in Washington, DC.According to a dispatch from Washington DC, the U.S. President also re-emphasized the commitment of his government to support the fight against Ebola epidemic now plaguing the sub-region.He made the commitment when he addressed the formal opening of the US – Africa Leaders Summit on Wednesday at the State Department, the venue of the Summit. “I deeply regret the absence of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia and President Ernest Bai Koroma of Sierra Leone, due primarily to the outbreak of Ebola in their countries. America will do everything in its power to ensure that the virus is contained in Liberia and West Africa,” President Obama assured.He also thanked leaders of the African continent for attending the summit and pledged to aid the continent’s growth and development, committing U.S. assistance. In response at the White House dinner on Tuesday, Vice President Boakai thanked the Government and people of the United States for their support to Liberia and apprised President Obama of the steps the Liberian Government has taken to curb the spread of the Ebola virus in the country. According to V.P. Boakai, the Ebola outbreak is overwhelming the limited health systems and resources of the country, but he emphasized that the Liberian people are determined to restrain and curtail the spread of the disease.Vice President Boakai is in the US leading the Liberian Government’s delegation at President Obama’s US – Africa Leaders Summit.Meanwhile, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has announced that it will be deploying a Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) to West Africa to coordinate the U.S. Government’s response to the Ebola outbreak. The disease has so far sickened more than 1,600 people, including nearly 900 who have died from the disease. According to information circulated to delegates attending the US – Africa Leaders Summit, USAID announced an additional US$5 million in assistance to help ramp up the international community’s Ebola response efforts.Specifically, this funding will go towards the expansion of Ebola outbreak programs the Agency is already supporting in Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia. These programs will help trace people who may be infected with the disease, as well as provide health clinics and households with hygiene kits, soap, bleach, gloves, masks, and other supplies to help prevent the spread of disease.In a related development, Vice President Boakai and delegation yesterday evening met with Liberians in the Maryland, Virginia and Washington D.C. areas at a Town Hall Meeting about 5:30 p.m. eastern time at the Trinity Episcopal Church on Piney Branch Road in Washington.He was at the same time expected to speak to Liberians across the United States when he appeared as a Special Guest on a popular online radio program hosted by the Liberia Destiny Debaters based in the US.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

What Can We Learn from Eric Duncan?

first_imgCan the death of Ebola-infected Eric Duncan in a United States hospital teach us anything?We believe it surely can.  The first lesson we can learn is that none of us should take Ebola for granted.  It can be, and often indeed is, a death sentence, though, as we have seen in the case of many survivors, it does not have to be.When in 1976 Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) reported the first Ebola outbreak, statistics showed that 90% of those infected died.  Today in Liberia, statistics indicate that over 50% of the Ebola infected die.This means that we are dealing with a highly dangerous, indeed deadly disease. The second lesson we can learn from Eric’s death is that the minute we sense the symptoms, we should run to a treatment center.  Once there, the ball is in the government’s court.  The center must be prepared to receive the patient and begin immediate observation, treatment and care.  Too many people have died unnecessarily because in their desperation, they have gone to treatment centers only to be turned back because of no space. We are grateful for the good news that engineers of the Armed Forces of Liberia and the United States military contingent here are building new treatment centers in many parts of the country.  We are also appreciative of the ELWA treatment center and others operated by Medecin Sans Frontier (MSF), which have been treating patients successfully and discharging them.  We pray that construction work on the new centers will be expeditiously completed, so that the infected may receive immediate relief and healing.The third lesson we can learn from our brother Eric is honesty.  We are compelled to be honest with ourselves and all others around us.  We must realize that it is highly dangerous to engage in what Winston Churchill called “terminological inexactitude,” which means a lie or untruth.  See how far Duncan’s lie led him—all the way across the Atlantic and into contact with airline passengers and crew, as well as his fiancé and all the others in the home and neighborhood in Dallas, Texas.  It is only by the grace of God that so far, no one has been found to have been infected by him.  Let us pray it remains that way.  The fact is that if we are not honest with ourselves we could infect others, as we saw in the case of Miss Liberia in Caldwell, where she and several others in the household died.We keep referring to great example of the Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Bernice Dahn, and Madam Yah Zolia, both of the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, who quarantined themselves the moment they discovered that they had been in contact with infected persons—who later died.  That is the way to do it.  In the process, many lives will be saved.What next can we learn from Eric?  Many Liberians interviewed following his death in a U.S. hospital said they were not surprised.  They recalled that two U.S. citizens who traveled back to the USA with the same infection from the same Liberia were cured.We cannot cast aspersion (misleading charge) on the Presbyterian Health Center where Eric was   treated and died.  We believe they did their best for him.  The only problem was that when he first appeared there, with a temperature of 100 degrees, instead of immediately detecting an abnormality, they gave him tablets and let him go.  There is a good chance that had they, knowing his nationality, tested him for Ebola, he might have had a chance of survival.  But by the time he paid his second visit, it was apparently too late.Our final point is about Liberians asking why did Eric die in an American hospital when two Americans were cured in American medical institutions.  This seems to be a lesson we Liberians have difficulty learning: the Americans, like most other nationalities, know how to look after one another.  Do we in Liberia? NO!  We prefer looking after other people rather than ourselves.  See how two Lebanese rapists who viciously assaulted Liberian women were freed by Liberian courts.What is the lesson there?        Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Coconut-Ginger Chips Producer Pleads for Support

first_imgProducer of ginger mixed coconut chips, Martha Wuo, is calling on nongovernmental organizations to provide her support to enable her produce more of the consumable commodity.Madam Wuo began her production in 2014 in Gbarnga, Bong County and the commodity is the first of its kind which is gaining popularity in the country.She said, “I use local materials to grind the coconut and it is time consuming.”She noted that materials like grater, hammer mill, dryer, and sifters are what she would need to increase production.“I want to produce more of the commodity, but I do not have the money to buy these equipments and that’s why I am appealing to non-governmental organizations to help me in this venture,” she said.Madam Wuo said they are now four in the business and she believes that if they are empowered, they would have more people joining them.She said she learned her trade when she was in school in Ghana and later in the Ivory Coast.She disclosed that what prompted her to do the business is because she noticed that majority Liberians chew coconut but don’t swallow the fruit which she said is very helpful to the human body.“Coconut and ginger are very helpful to the body in terms of fever, cold. I don’t want what I’ve learned to be buried in the ground so I must empower others and make a living from it,” Madam Wuo said.She said her products are accepted with a growing number of customers and is hopeful that with support she could make her country proud.The local producer however encouraged Liberians to promote products made in the country to encourage other business owners to showcase their products.She disclosed that her next target is to bring the product to Monrovia and other counties. Coconut locally can be grinded and mixed with flour to fix fried or roasted cookies.The new initiated by Madam Wuo, however, takes into consideration grinding the coconut and then mixing it with ginger, sugar and patched into crispy chips.The chips are bottled for sale for LD$100.00.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Dr. Evelyn Kandakai Takes Over Cuttington Today

first_imgDr. Evelyn Kandakai, Liberia’s former Minister of Education, today takes over as Acting President of Cuttington University.She was recently appointed to the position by the university’s Board of Trustees, headed by its chairman, Most Rev. Jonathan B.B. Hart, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Liberia and archbishop of the Interim Province of West Africa (Anglican). Dr. Kandakai’s appointment follows the recent retirement of Dr. Henrique Tokpa, who was elected Cuttington president in 2002. His last commencement as head of the university was held on September 26, 2015, when the Vice President of Sierra Leone, Victor B. Foh, served as the commencement speaker. Dr. Kandakai is herself an alumna of Cuttington. Following her graduation, she matriculated to the University of Pennsylvania, one of America’s top ten institutions of higher learning, where she earned a Ph.D in education.She was recently appointed as head of the Monrovia office of the West African Examinations Council (WAEC). Before then she served for the past two years as vice president of the United Methodist University (UMU). Prior to that, Dr. Kandakai was executive director of the Liberia Education Trust (LET), where she served until 2010. She is the eldest offspring of the former Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of Liberia, General Albert White and his wife, Mrs. Gertrude Cassell White, youngest sister of former Attorney General C. Abayomi Cassell. General White later served as Superintendent of Grand Gedeh County and Vice Chairman of the Elections Commission during the 1980s.Dr. Kandakai’s grandfather was Professor Nathaniel H.B. Cassell of Liberia College (now University of Liberia). It was after him that the tallest building on the UL main campus was named during the presidency of Dr. Rocheforte L. Weeks (1959-1972). Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more