By: Sylvester Cytric Cholopay
Liberia-February 27, 2023: The Executive Director of Liberia Peace-building Office has disclosed that Liberia’s peace might be hijacked by the youthful population of the country if nothing is done to empower them.
Mr. Edward K. Mulbah, a Liberian peace diplomat and peace consultant to South Sudan, said if the difficult conditions of young people continue to plunge them in protracted suffering, they might lose patience, and sacrifices and they would have the courage to hijack the peace for everyone and plant the seeds of bitterness for the country and its leaders – especially for leaders in all spheres political and business leaders.
The Liberian Peace Diplomat therefore urged Liberians to be mindful of the maintenance and sustainability of their peace, especially as they gear towards their country’s crucial 2023 general elections.
“The groups of disadvantaged youth, including those referred to as Zogoes have mobilized around their vulnerabilities and have command structures in place, for example, 5-star generals, 4- star generals and so on; and they have limited social and economic reintegration opportunities including recreation centers for rehabilitation. This kind of situation is worrisome and a cause for concern, as it poses significant security threats to the state, as well as the future generation. This seed of bitterness will produce the fruits of entrenched resentments and hatred for our leaders, we will have more crimes, we will have increased lawlessness and violence in our community and in our society”, Mr. Mulbah alarmed.
He was speaking over the weekend on the theme ‘’What kind of Liberia do we want?’ as keynote speaker of the official launch of the Youth Professional Skills Development Seminars, a flagship program of the CEEF-Institute for Leadership Professional Studies (CILPS) nationwide seminars on Friday, February 24, 2023, in Congo Town, Monrovia.
He said Liberia, a country with a land of great abundance of resources which abounds in so many riches, in its soil and natural resources, needs to be watered a new by highly trained and professional young people who have acquired employable skills, knowledge and experience to service the kind of Country Liberians deserve.
“We want a Country that the young people are in charge of their future, based on their education, and are capable of working and earning money to take care of themselves and their families; yes, we want a country that is free from drugs, that we do not have young people living in graveyards and giving birth to children. “We might not get the kind of Liberia we actually want with prosperity, unless we deliberately and intentionally prepare the younger generation, driven by the kind of leadership and undertaking significant investments – that is the only way our country, the kind of country we want can be realized”, Mr. Mulbah asserted.
The CEEF-Institute for Leadership Professional Studies (CILPS) nationwide seminars’ keynote speaker however disclosed that Liberia could reach its full potential depending on the kind of leadership that the country has or must have. He said a leadership that steers the country towards the direction for better lives and equitable opportunities could be the change.
He further revealed that the young people of Liberia feel oppressed, marginalized or have a sense of exclusion, where an enabling environment is created for everyone to actively participate in the development of their country based on their respective capacities.
The Liberian veteran peace diplomat meanwhile challenged all Liberians, whether leaders in politics, in business, or in civil society to listen to young people’s concerns, to capture their feelings as they are not asking for anything that is impossible – rather they are asking for things that they are able to do by creating opportunities for them.
He concluded by applauding CEEF-Institute for Leadership Professional Studies for the empowerment and positive transformation it has been carrying on over the time in the lives of youth.
In remarks, the Chief Executive Officer of the CEEF-Institute for Leadership Professional Studies (CILPS), Mr. James F. Kamanda II, said the goal of this program is to continue empowering youth for future career and building competence for high positions in national and international organizations especially high school or university students.
Mr. Kamanda furthered that his intuition will carry on community enhancement education programs towards empowering the youth for a better future, especially in individual development.
” We are preparing the generation of young people to take charge of their future through development of appropriate skills and knowledge to better their lives”, Mr. Kamanda noted.
Giving the overview of the program, Mr. Thomas Saah Varney – a training coordinator of the Professional Skills Development Seminars said the project is aimed at increasing the skills and knowledge of youths in career professionalization.
Varney intoned that the project will help youths develop skills and knowledge in designing a marketable curriculum for employment, the basic values and approaches expected of professionals (work ethics and protocols) and approaches required in acquiring and sustaining employment in international organizations while teaching project writing and management skills as well.