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Showing posts with label Liberia. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Liberia. Show all posts

See what our music stars are doing to the world: They ignite fire from Lagos to the whole world

By Ehi Braimah
(Braimah is a public relations and marketing strategist based in Lagos)
VANGUARD Nigeria. Saturday, March 23, 2019

Nigeria's music culture ignites fire from Lagos to Accra, Nairobi, Dubai,
Johannesburg, Cape Town, London, Toronto, Houston and Atlanta

On election day for governors in 29 States and State Houses of Assembly seats on Saturday March 9, 2019, my family and I were having a late breakfast at about noon and Trace Naija, the popular music channel on DSTV, was on and featuring songs by top Nigerian artistes.

Then I popped this question to no one in particular: who is your favourite Nigerian music artiste and why? My daughter, a keen music follower with her eyes on media arts as a possible future vocation, answered me and announced Wizkid and Davido because of the lyrics, beat, tempo and rhythms of their songs. Wow, I exclaimed! She explained further that their songs are popular and relate well with a youthful audience.

From Lagos to Accra, Nairobi, Dubai, Johannesburg, Cape Town, London, Toronto, Houston and Atlanta, just to name a few places, Nigerian music, sometimes branded as Naija music, has created a new culture of entertainment, excitement and enjoyment as popular dance hall music in those places. Be it a bar, nightclub, lounge or restaurant, music lovers gyrate to the beat coming out of the sound monitors that are recognised and celebrated as Nigerian music.

Two years ago in Nairobi, my host Uche and I visited Club 40/40, Kiza Lounge and Black Diamond where 'Naija' pop music is played steadily. I had the same experience in Atlanta, USA, last October when Ernest, Ralph and I visited Sage restaurant, Little Lagos restaurant, Buckhead Loft, Whiskey Mistress and Regent Lounge.

I'm told that new lounges and restaurants such as Blue Lagoon and Ace also celebrate Nigerian music by Wizkid, Davido, Run Town, Olamide, Tekno, Burna Boy and so on. The effect is usually spontaneous – you just get up and begin to shake your body without any prompting to the unmistakable beats in the songs. The beats give the songs a unique Nigerian identity - a product exported from Nigeria.

When Dr. Reuben Abati interrogated this subject about 10 years ago in the Guardian as the newspaper's editorial board chair and columnist, he wrote that the lyrics in the music by most Nigerian artistes were meaningless and disgusting. The reactions from different quarters, especially the music industry, were swift and defiant and the matter became highly controversial at the time.

The artistes and their promoters fought back vehemently, challenging Dr Abati to a dwell in the court of public opinion and he had to publish countless rejoinders on the matter. Between then and now, the successes of our pop music stars have been remarkable and their achievements profound, thereby earning recognition globally.

Even if you do not agree with content and messaging strategy of the lyrics, the fact remains that the music produced is very popular, enjoyable and hilarious to the music consumer, and very danceable, too. There was a gap our artistes identified which they filled and the result was the big bang effect - they suddenly became popular and began to make waves, and they have never looked back since then.

Popularity and celebrity status varies among the music stars. Fame, which usually comes with a price, may come too early for some of our rising and well established stars, and when there is no consistency in their respective musical repertoire or when the successes achieved are not properly managed, it could spell trouble and declining fortunes may set in.

Stardom means experiencing a new world of bling bling, living in luxurious homes, making significant fashion statements, driving exotic cars and hiring private jets. For the male folks, women are never in short supply; being super stars actually means living life to the fullest. As the discussions continued over the late breakfast, my daughter revealed a Vanguard newspaper story where Mark Dayton, governor of Minnesota in the United States of America, declared October 6 every year as Wizkid Day. That's truly a big deal. It is remarkable.

Ebola as grand conspiracy against Africa

Written By Josef Omorotionmwan - Nigeria

A picture taken in Oshodi Heritage park in Lagos on October 20, 2014 shows an electronic information board on Ebola reading in pidgin English “No Shaking ! We go Chase Ebola Comot” which means “No cause for worry, we will chase Ebola away”. Africa’s most populous nation Nigeria was on Monday declared officially Ebola free but warned that it remained vulnerable as long as the virus was raging elsewhere in west Africa. The country representative of the World Health Organization, Rui Gama Vaz, said 42 days — or two incubation periods of 21 days — had elapsed without any new confirmed cases of the deadly virus.
Dangerous ignorance is more dangerous than dangerous knowledge. As his eyes open up, the African is bound to be enraged. Has anyone ever stopped to think of the agony of a people who are victimized in every sphere of life; a people who are dying daily out of no fault of theirs?

Listen to the people who distrust their hospitals; these are otherwise very loving people who can no longer shake hands with, and hug, their relatives and friends; and people who suddenly must resort to hosting members of their elite clubs with stock-fish or "eja shokotoyokoto" (iced fish) instead of the delicacies of antelope and porcupine meat, which they once enjoyed, all for fear of Ebola!

Listen to people whose rights of passage to foreign lands must be totally abridged and if they must pass, they must be thoroughly screened, sometimes beyond their under-pants, before being thrown into quarantine without any explanation - with the accompanying life stigma - all because of their skin pigmentation or the accident of geography!

Suppose in this state of melancholy, you are told that the so-called Ebola virus is man-induced? And suddenly signs begin to emerge that the most- dreaded viruses in the world today - Ebola and HIV/AIDS - may be another grand conspiracy against the Black race. Recently, the Liberian Daily Observer, the largest newspaper in Liberia, featured an eye opener in its front page in an article titled "Ebola, AIDS Manufactured by Western Pharmaceuticals, US DOD?"

The article accused the Western world of manufacturing the Ebola outbreak in a scheme to use Africa as a testing ground for bio-weapons.
Scientists agree essentially that deadly diseases like Ebola and HIV/AIDS are bio-weapons that are being tested on Africans and also being used as a check on Africa's population. Incidentally, Liberia currently has the continent's fastest growing population.
Admittedly, to be opposed to technology in today's world would tantamount to self-hatred. But the White man's inhumanity to the Black is also not an act of God.

The Liberian Observer points out that Ebola has long been recognized as a Genetically Modified Organism, GMO. In his work, Emerging Viruses: AIDS and Ebola - Nature, Accident or Intentional, Horowitz (1998) was most unambiguous: "The discussion in the early 1970s made it obvious that the war was between countries that hosted the KGB and the CIA, and the manufacture of AIDS-like viruses was clearly directed at the other... He had confirmed the existence of an American-Medical-Industry that conducts biological weapons tests under the guise of administering vaccinations to control diseases and improve the health of Black Africans overseas".

Ebola has a terrible history and testing has been secretly taking place in Africa. Dr. Horowitz confirms further: "The pathological description of what was found in animals killed by the Ebola virus is what the virus has been doing to citizens of Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia in its most recent outbreak: Ebola virus destroys peoples' internal organs and the body deteriorates rapidly after death. It softens and the tissues turn into jelly, even if it is refrigerated to keep it coldSpontaneous liquefaction is what happens to the body of people killed by the Ebola virus! The 1976 Ebola incident in Zaire, during President Mobutu Sese Seko, was the introduction of the GMO to Africa".


Liberia is situated in Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean. The landscape in Liberia is characterised by mostly flat to rolling coastal plains, which rise to rolling plateau and low mountains in the northeast. The climate is hot and humid with a lot of rain fall. Winters are dry with hot days and cool to cold nights in Liberia. Summers are wet and cloudy with frequent heavy showers.
Liberia Weather is Hot, tropical climate with little variation in temperature. The wet season runs from May to October. The dry harmattan wind blows from December to March, making the coastal belt particularly arid. Lightweight cottons and linens are worn throughout the year, with waterproofing advised during the wet season.
Liberia was traditionally noted for its hospitality, academic institutions, cultural skills, and arts/craft works.
The population of over 3 million comprises 16 indigenous ethnic groups and various foreign minorities. Indigenous peoples comprise about 95% of the population, the largest of which are the Kpelle in central and western Liberia. Americo-Liberians, who are descendants of freed slaves that arrived in Liberia as of 1821, make up an estimated 5% of the population, of whom half from US origin and half from the Caribbean. There also is a sizable number of Lebanese, Indians, and other West African nationals who make up a significant part of Liberia's business community. A few whites (estimated at 18,000 in 1999; probably fewer now) reside in the country.
The most evocative description of Liberia can be found in Graham Greene’s Journey without Maps, an account of his overland trip across the country in 1935. Although it can now hardly pretend to be an up-to-date guide book, the descriptions and the atmosphere of the country it creates – particularly when dealing with the mysterious and jungle-rich interior – make the book a valuable and entertaining introduction for anyone planning to visit the country.
Monrovia, The capital is a sprawling city on the coast divided by inlets, lagoons and rocky headlands.
The city has several nightclubs, restaurants and bars, centered on the area around Gurley Street. There are several good sandy beaches near the capital.
Around 80km (50 miles) from the capital is Lake Piso, ideal for fishing and watersports. Conducted tours of the Firestone Rubber Plantation, one of the largest in the world, make an interesting day excursion, situated only 50km (30 miles) from Monrovia. Some of the country’s most beautiful beaches can be found at Robertsport. The Kpa-Tawe Waterfalls are four hours 30 minutes’ drive away from Monrovia (a 4-wheel-drive vehicle is recommended).
For wildlife and nature enthusiasts, the Sapo National Park has much to offer: located in Sinoe County, this pristine forest wilderness is home to a great variety of plants and animal species (including elephant, leopard, giant forest hog and the rare pygmy hippo). The park is only accessible on foot (there are no roads) and consists largely of rainforest, which has never been logged, and hence makes it Western Africa’s largest untouched tract of rainforest. The park’s western boundary is formed by the Sinoe River.
Republic of Liberia
Area: 43,000 sq mi (111,370 sq km)
Population (2006 est.): 3,042,004 (growth rate: 4.9%); birth rate: 44.8/1000; infant mortality rate: 155.8/1000; life expectancy: 39.6; density per sq mi: 82
Capital : Monrovia
Currency : Liberian dollar
Languages: English 20% (official), some 20 ethnic-group languages
Ethnicity: indigenous African tribes 95% (including Kpelle, Bassa, Gio, Kru, Grebo, Mano, Krahn, Gola, Gbandi, Loma, Kissi, Vai, Bella, Mandingo, and Mende), Americo-Liberians 2.5% (descendants of former U.S. slaves), Congo People 2.5% (descendants of former Caribbean slaves)
Religions: traditional 40%, Christian 40%, Islam 20%
Literacy : 58%
Ma Ellen must succeed !
Sent by: GEORGE-KAMARA Nunwin P. - Liberia
"... Ma Ellen, as she is affectionately called, personifies the actual strength, beauty, and humanity of the LIBERIAN PEOPLE. Her success is ours, and likewise, her failure.
We must lend her our all to ensure that she succeeds...."
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was inaugurated President of Liberia on January 16, 2006 after a successful win of a well contested free and fair election in October and November, 2005. After years of fighting for freedom, justice and equality in Liberia, spending time in jail and being forced into exile more than once, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is now entrusted with the most challenging task any Liberian leader has ever faced – rebuilding a post-conflict nation. She has revived national hope and restored Liberia’s international reputation and credibility. Through her leadership, the Government has identified four Pillars in support of its development agenda: Peace and Security, Economic Revitalization, Governance and the Rule of Law, and Infrastructure and Basic Services.

National peace has been consolidated by strengthening key institutions of national security and completing the process of demilitarization, demobilization, training and reintegration of ex-combatants.
The President’s leadership has resulted in the lifting of U.N. sanctions on the country’s diamond and forestry sectors and the successful renegotiation of multi-million dollar concession agreements with ArcelorMittal and Firestone. Several other investment proposals for the re-opening of traditional economic activities in the mining and agriculture sector are underway. The country is well on the way to receiving relief for the USD$4.7 billion debt under the HIPC arrangement and is qualified for AGOA and threshold status under the Millennium Challenge Account.

President Johnson Sirleaf’s strong bipartisan support from the U.S. has resulted in Liberia’s inclusion in two supplemental budgets and to her well recognized speech at a Joint Meeting of Congress on March 15, 2006. In recognition for her tireless efforts to make Liberia a post-conflict success story, she was awarded in 2007 the coveted United States Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor bestowed by an American President.

President Johnson Sirleaf began her career in banking and economic and financial management in 1965 at the then Treasury Department in Liberia. In 1979, as Minister of Finance of Liberia, she spearheaded the move to curb the mismanagement of Government finances and mobilize external resources for Liberia’s development. After the military coup of 1980, she served as President of the Liberian Bank for Development and Investment (LBDI), Vice President of CITICORP’s Africa Regional Office in Nairobi and Senior Loan Officer at the World Bank where she was an initial member of the World Bank Council of African Advisors. In 1985, she took a sabbatical to contest for a seat in the Liberian Senate. She was placed under house arrest and then sentenced to ten years in prison for speaking against the Samuel Doe regime. After being incarcerated for a few months, she was released in response to strong protest and petition from Liberian women and the international community. She then fled to the United States and served as Vice President for Equator Bank and in 1992 she joined the UNDP as Assistant Administrator and Director of its Regional Bureau of Africa with the rank of Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations. She left that post in 1997 to run as a Presidential candidate.

In 2003 when the National Transitional Government of Liberia (NTGL) was formed, Johnson Sirleaf was selected to serve as Chairperson of the Governance Reform Commission where she led the country’s anti-corruption reform by changing the reporting mechanism of the General Auditing Commission from the Executive to the Legislature, thereby strengthening and reinforcing its independence.

President Johnson Sirleaf has served on many advisory boards and committees. Notably among these are: International Crisis Group (USA); Songhai Financial Holdings Ltd. (Ghana); Center for Africa’s International Relations, University of Witwatersrand (South Africa); Women’s World Banking (USA); Synergos (USA) and Women Waging Peace (USA). She was the first Chairperson for the Open Society Institute for West Africa (OSIWA).
She is the recipient of several awards including the F.A.O. Ceres Award (2008), Civil Rights Museum Award (2007); the Africa Prize for the Sustainable End of Hunger (2006); the IRI Freedom Award (2006); the David Rockefeller Leadership Bridging Award (2006) and the Common Ground Award (2006). Special honors received include Commander de l’Ordre du Mono of Togo (1996); the Ralph Bunche International Leadership Award (1995); Franklin D. Roosevelt Freedom of Speech Award (1988); and the Grand Commander of the Star of Africa Redemption (1980).

President Johnson Silreaf was born in Monrovia and attended the College of West Africa. She holds a Masters in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, a Diploma from the Economics Institute of the University of Colorado and a Bachelor of Business Administration from Madison Business College. She has received seven Honorary Doctorate degrees from universities around the world and is founder and chief supporter of Measuagoon, a community development NGO in Liberia.

She is the proud mother of four sons and has nine grandchildren.

Ma Ellen, as she is affectionately called, personifies the actual strength, beauty, and humanity of the LIBERIAN PERSON. Her success is ours, and likewise, her failure.

We must lend her our all to ensure that she succeeds.

Contact Info
Office: Executive Mansion, Republic of Liberia
Location: Capitol Hill, Monrovia
Monrovia, Liberia
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