Archive for August, 2011


 

A new Liberian company “Suah Enterprises” producing fashion and home decorating materials has been established in the country.

According to the chief executive officer (CEO) of the enterprises, Madam Elfreda Mayson, the Suah Enterprises is the project of two women from Liberia, Madam Elfreda Mayson and her partner, Maria Carreno.

Madam Mayson, who is an entrepreneur and designer from Liberia and owner of Ema Design, a company based in the United States importing home accessories from Liberia, Senegal and Ghana, disclosed that the establishment of the company will showcase the beautiful natural materials and talents of Liberians.

Madam Mayson said, although living in the US increases her passion for textiles and designs, which are purely African in spirit, living abroad has only heightened her interest in the indigenous textiles of African especially those found in her native country Liberia.
According to her, the business is intended to further showcase the culture and talents of Liberians especially women.

Speaking to reporters during the course of the week, Madam Mayson said, home goods and fashion accessories are guaranteed enough to meet the standers of the world market.

The Suah Enterprises’ CEO also disclosed that finished products from the company will be exported to Europe and other parts of the world.

The Suah enterprises consist of several stages including the Jola House Creation; a segment of the Suah Enterprises that will produce home goods and fashion accessories for the World Market.

This part of the Suah Enterprises is centrally located in Monrovia, and will comprise of skilled workers working in a cooperative setting with a job mentoring for growth.

Madam Mayson was earlier quoted as saying that finished products will be exported and globally through Suah Enterprises, providing the artisans with huge customer-based that would not otherwise be available to them.

Suah is committed to encouraging the preservation and production of traditional Liberian crafts, especially textiles, she said.

According to her, the management of Suah Enterprises will both export these crafts in traditional form and incorporate them into their contemporary home décor and accessories line.

The Suah Enterprises has expressed commitment to empowering Liberia women with the needed skills to serve as both a source of income earner for the artisans through the sale of their works to help preserve part of the culture heritage of the country.

Also speaking, the Marketing officer of the Company, Madam Emily Anderson promised to promote the products of the Suah Enterprises on the International market.

Madam Anderson also disclosed that she will advocate on the international scene enabling Liberians for the first time to attend the upcoming international festival in Mexico.

 

Liberia’s National Elections Commission (NEC) has released the first preliminary results of the National Referendum. James M. Fromayan, Chairman of NEC, released the results today Thursday 25th August at 16:00GMT when he addressed a news conference at the Commission’s headquarters in Sinkor, Monrovia

He stated that, the Commission has so far received provisional results from 935 of 4,457 polling places spread across the 1780 Voting Precincts.

According to him, they recorded  a total votes of 120,596 for  Preposition 1 Amendment to Article 52(c) which seeks to reduce the residency clause for the Presidency from 10 years to 5 years prior to an election, they recorded 55,137 “Yes” votes, 50,128 “No” votes and 15,331 invalid votes.

A total vote of 120,596 was cast for the controversial Proposition 2 Amendment to Article 72(b), as to whether or not to adopt an increase in the retirement age for all judges from 70 to 75 years of age. The Commission recored 43,825 “Yes” votes, 61,851 “No” votes, 14,920 invalid votes.

while Proposition 3 Amendment to Article 83(a) as to whether or not the people would want a change in the date of national elections October to November. Fromayan says for “Yes” votes they record 57,646, “No” votes was 47,612 , 15,338 invalid votes and  and in all 120,596 total votes was cast.

Finally for Proposition 4 Amendment to Article 83(a), which involves the introduction of single round first-past-the-post voting for all legislative and municipal elections, the NEC chairman reports 66,170 “Yes” Votes, 38,191 for “No” votes, 16,235 invalid votes and 120, 596 total votes.

According to NEC, a proposition shall be considered approved when it receives two-thirds majority of total valid votes cast. The Final Announcement of Results is scheduled for Wednesday, September 7, 2011. and he concluded that more provisional results will be released on Friday 26th 2011.

 

By Darlington Micah

Darlington Mica is a Liberian social commentator, business consultant and educator

You can reach Darlington Mica at darlingtonmicah44@gmail.com  Tel: +2316450906

 

 

The Liberian agricultural sector has continued to be one of the strong pillars on which the economy finds equilibrium. Prior to the civil conflict, the agricultural sector, including forestry, in 1987 contributed about 37.2 % of the GDP and provided employment for about 75 % of the labor force. This sector also contributed about 25 % of the country’s export earnings basically from rubber and logs as the major commodities.

The agricultural sector, second only to the mining industry of predominantly iron ore in pre-conflict era, has boomeranged to become the leading contributor to the national economy in the post-conflict setting. Total agricultural output in 1999 accounted for 76 % of the GDP as compared to 37.2 % in 1987, official statistics shows.
The leading commodities making such profound impact in this sector are rubber and logs, although the sector comprises other cash crops like cocoa, coffee, and oil palm farms scattered across the countryside.

Plagued by low investment, antiquated technology and poor marketing, credit and research facilities, the agriculture sector yearns for capital infusion to increase aggregate output and improve the overall economic performance of the sector.

“Agriculture is very key to anything that happens in this country for the mere fact that over 70 % of our people are involved in this sector.

For more information about the sector and investment opportunities contact:

Darlington Micah. Email: darlingtonmicah44@yahoo.com Tel:+2316450906

 

 

There are various species of Wildlife in Liberia which has enhanced the balance of the eco system of the country. Liberia is an important nation in Africa and is a well known center for business. There are dense equatorial and mangrove forests in various parts of the country which is an important habitat for Wildlife in Liberia.

The various wildlife reserves and woodlands of the country are home to various species of flora and fauna. The popularity of Liberia wildlife has enhanced the scope of eco tourism in the country. Plenty of tourists and nature lovers come to the wildlife reserves and forests to have a feel of the habitat of the wild animals. The Peer Coast comprises dense mangrove vegetation while the inland areas also have dry grasslands. the wildlife serves are popular points of sightseeing in Liberia.

There are around 260 species of trees in the country. Some important species of trees that are found in the forests of Liberia are teak, mahogany, walnut and lots more. Wildlife in Liberia consists of a rich variety of mammals, birds, reptiles and so on. There are crocodile, elephants, monkeys, antelopes, elephants, wild buffalos, leopards, tortoise, cobras, vipers, boas, chimpanzees and various other species.

There are also some endangered and unique species of wildlife in Liberia. Efforts are being made to conserve them. People in the country are being educated about conservation of nature. The government has also taken initiatives to increase the popularity of eco tourism in the country.

They are:

  • Rhinoceros
  • Liberian Mongoose
  • Pygmy Hippopotamus
  • Red River Hog

Liberia wildlife also consists of a various bird species. The forests and woodlands are home to various types of birds like:

  • Hornbills
  • Weaver-birds
  • woodpeckers
  • pigeons
  • doves
  • flamingos
  • parrots
  • hawks
  • eagles
  • bulbul

Visit to the wildlife reserves are an important part of Liberia Tours. Plenty of wildlife tours and excursions from Liberia are undertaken to the forests and wildlife reserves. There are luxury tours as well as economy tours. Most tours take place in cars or trekkers. Travelers who are interested in the trip should obtain information from the local tourist office or various other travel agencies.

 

Oil exploration off the Liberian coast has begun in earnest by the Anadarko Petroleum Corporation. The process which took off on Friday, August 12, was witnessed by President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield.

Other officials at the official launch were the President and CEO of the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL), Mr. Christopher Neyor; as well as NOCAL’s Chairman, Mr. Clemenceau Urey. They were taken on a guided tour of the facilities by Anadarko’s Country Director, Mr. Bernie Sanger.

An Executive Mansion release says during the tour, the Liberian leader was introduced to the staff of Anadarko, which also includes Liberians. Impressed by the facilities, the President expressed satisfaction that Anadarko had begun oil exploration and wished the company success in its venture.

Anadarko, which is operating off the coast of Montserrado County, began exploration on July 25th.  The oil company is engaged in one of two explorations being conducted simultaneously off Liberia’s coast.

Another company, African Petroleum, began a similar exercise a week after Anadarko, operating 30 miles off the coast of Grand Bassa and River Cess Counties. Anadarko Petroleum Corporation recently finalized plans for its 2011 drilling operations in the Liberian basin of West Africa. Two wells will be drilled off eastern Sierra Leone and one off western Liberia.

 

Mondo Youth Leadership Program – Support Us!

The mission of the Mondo Youth Leadership Training Program is to revive and enrich communities in Liberia through the upliftment  and transformation of youth. If given the tools to see clearly, young people have the vision to do something positive in their communities. They also have the energy to translate their vision into action. MONDO Program creates a platform youth to make a difference in their world. Local youth are encouraged, motivated, recruited, train and then become “Agent of Change” MONDO Program puts special emphasis on training women to become youth leaders, as change is only sustainable when women are fully participating in the process.
Despite the end of the war in Liberia five years ago, its negative impact continues to be felt on the lives and livelihoods of the  group that will ultimately determine the country’s future and its ability to emerge from its history of armed conflict: its youth.

Fourteen years of war prevented far too many youth from attaining basic education. A majority of Liberian youth between  the ages of 15-35 also lack access to adequate health care and reproductive health services, and have neither the requisite   education, nor the technical and entrepreneurial skills to obtain gainful employment in both the private and public sectors. As  a result, employers cannot find qualified youth in the country’s active labour force. This acts as an impediment to investment  and encourages the use of migrant labour for skilled work. In addition, the prevalent perception of youth as a threat to peace  discourages many employers from hiring and training them.

During the war, children and young people constituted the largest group of recruited fighters; they are part of an entire generation  that, until now, has never experienced peace in their lifetime. A significant number of youth, including a large number of excombatants,   are vulnerable to exploitation. They are susceptible to being drawn back into the only command structure they   know, especially if viable employment options are not made available.

Furthermore, young women in Liberia continue to be disadvantaged compared to young men. This arises because young   women’s social and reproductive roles entail more responsibilities and other social constraints that render them more vulnerable.  This results in unequal access to education and vocational training, higher drop-out and illiteracy rates, limited participation in decision-making and unequal power relationships at home and within institutions.

Former girl child soldiers reflect on their traumatic experiences, watch video on this link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V_idiRoOLN0

Liberia female fighters

http://www.girlswithguns.org/news/news0008.htm

About Myself:

Darlington  Micah is a Liberian human rights activist, youth leader, educator  and business consultant who has been working with marginalized and war- affected youth in Liberia for over three years. He has thought secondary-school with high-risk teens, run a community development program servicing 1000 youth, advised policy and programming for post-conflict recovery for Liberia Government.  He is the Founder and director of the MONDO Program.

You can reach Drlington at this address: darlington909@yahoo.com , darlingotnmicah44@gmail.com Tel: +2316450906

 

Liberia Fashion Week is an initiative launched to establish a top-notch fashion industry for Liberia by promoting aspiring and eminent fashion designers, models, artists and the development of Liberia’s textile. For more information about the Liberian fashion week contact: http://malcolmxpark.org

 

Liberia offers a wide variety of tourist attractions such as extended and roomy rivers and more than 350 miles of clean sandy ocean beaches ideal for surfing, swimming and other water sports, including natural sceneries, an abundance of lakes, waterfalls, islands, historical and eco-tourist sites, wildlife, and one of the biggest tropical rainforest in West Africa. Liberia’s forests constitute the largest remaining blocks of the Upper Guinean Forests Ecosystem, a threatened global hotspot for biodiversity, home to many rare endangered flora and fauna. They also play a vital role in the nation’s economy; around 7,000 people depend on them for their livelihood.

Other attractions include traditional ways of life preserved in local customs, rich and varied handicrafts and other colorful products depicting or illustrative of native arts and lifestyle, and the authentic unsophisticated but friendly attitude of many in the Liberian population. However, many of these attractions are still largely untapped and even at their raw states; they are still being enjoyed by few outsiders either very rich visitors in quest of exoticism or adventurous people in search of new challenge and experience. The lack of required modern infrastructural facilities and in some parts of the country acute conditions of underdevelopment and poverty can be seen. These are impediments to tourism, which the Government of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has been tackling.

Liberia – Africa’s unspoiled Surf Paradise

No were else but Liberia in West Africa offers a wonderful adventure and discovery on the African continent. Liberia presents a unique and fulfilling experience for those seeking to discover the local heritage of destination whilst being sure that the local communities will benefit directly form their presence on the ground.

 

There are so many miles unknown surf spots and so many dusty trails leading to excitement. Sure, we all know about the point breaks of Morocco and the perfect waves of J-Bay, but in between and beyond lie thousands of kilometers of untapped white pristine African beaches crying out for budding surf explores.

Just imaging what it must be to surf in Liberia. Imagine riding waves under the brooding fortifications of an old slave fort. White pristine beaches bordered by palm trees, rolling green hills dominated by lush untouched rainforest, the silence only disturbed by birds and monkeys calling after one another and sound of the waves lapping against the shore, not to forget the sea at a constant warm temperature. As you look deeper into the local area, you will find friendly local communities, usually fishermen, who work hard to survive in the poverty stricken rural areas, children playing football on the beach who invite you to kick the ball about, a family having lunch out side on the porch who motion for you to come and taste a local dish, and everyone with smiling faces showing that you don’t need to be happy. You feel a sense of freedom, devoid of materialism and barriers, a feeling of, at least finding the true sense of the word “living”.  For more information about Liberia tourism and investment in the sector contact: darlingtonmicah44@gmail.com

COUNTRY RESOURCES

 

LIBERIA MINING SECTOR
Preliminary survey of Liberia by the Holland Syndicate from 1935 to 1937 led to the official discovery of gold, diamond and iron ore in some areas of the country even though the existence of gold and iron ore was know long ago by the natives who mined and used these metals for trading. By 1943 there was a boom in the gold mining industry which exported the highest of 30,800 troy ozs of gold in that same year with production still in the hands of Africans. It was not until the early 1950s that diamond digging started along the Lofa River near to Wuesua, which also led to a rush in other parts of the country. In 1951, the first iron ore company, “Liberia Mining Company”, started production following earlier negotiations between the United States and Liberian Government.

From this time the mineral industry started substantial contributions to the Liberian economy.
Subsequent reconnaissance geological and geophysical mapping coupled with limited geochemical surveys of Liberia, by the government, international institutions and private geologists, have revealed a greater mineral wealth of iron ore, diamond, gold, barite, kysnite, phosphate, clays, heavy mineral beach sands, bauxite and manganese. During the reconnaissance survey it was also recognized that over 90 percent of Liberia is underlain by Precambrian metamorphic and igneous basement rocks that are conformably overlain and infolded into, by metavolcano-sedimentary formations and of quarzites, banded iron formations, amphibolites and ultramafics which form prominent narrow ridges throughout the country.
Phanerozoic coastal sediments and a swarm of Jurassic dykes and sills constitute the rest.
Prolonged tropical weathering has resulted in lateritic ironstones capping the hill tops and unconsolidated Tertiary to recent sediments (alluvium) filling the river valleys.

The geologic setting seems favorable for the formation of the following geology types of deposits:

(A) Precambrian chemical sedimentary, banded iron and manganese formations, also submarine exhalative processes bordering with the continental nucleus e.g. iron, manganese, phosphate.

(B) Archeane grindstone and metasedimentary belts with granite associations, e. g. gold and sulfide deposits.

(C) Residual concentration, e. g. bauxite

(D) Mechanical concentration of steam and beaches placers, e.g. diamonds, gold, heavy mineral brach sand etc.

(E) Magnetic concentration, e. g. Diamond pipes and dykes;

(F) Hidrothermal processes e.g. gold, barite.

Present mineral production in Liberia involves iron ore, diamond and gold mining which together contribute more than 65 percent of the value of the total export earnings of the country. Mining, therefore, dominates the monetary sector of the economy and represents the most important economic activity. The overal contribution of the mining sector to Gross Domestic Product at constant factor cost showed an average of 30 percent in 1980 and 1981, after averaging 25 percent per year from 1977 to 1979. The mining industry also provides a means of livelihood to a large number of workers and their dependants. Total number of workers in mining and quarrying stand at 20,000 in 1981 which represents about 3 percent of the working population. Mining operations have also led to the provision of infrastructural facilities such as hospitals, schools, electricity, water supply etc. in those areas where the mines located (mining communities). The availability of the structures, which under normal circumstances those areas would not have benefited from has therefore enhanced productive capacity of those areas. The sector has also been a source of revenue payments such as royalty, profit sharing, export duties, income tax, exploration licenses, minings licenses, brokers and dealers licenses to the goverment.

Iron ore mining has constituted the most important activity since 1965 and is now carried out by three companies (LAMCI, BMC and NIOC) since the closure of LMC in 1977; the companies altogether produce over 20 million long tons of crude ore per year, which makes Liberia the leading exporting country of iron ore in Africa, and ranks seventh in the worth. Production, however, might fall this year due to the world wide problems facing the iron ore industry.

Other mining activities, mainly for placer gold and diamonds, are done on a small scale by hand-methods with the exception of one mechanized gold mine once operated near Zwedru (BITC) in Grand Gedeh County; the production of gold and diamonds can only be measured in terms of export volume.

The production of gold increased by 121 percent from 7,243 ozs in 1980 to 15,991 ozs in 1981. Diamonds production also showed an increase of 5.2 percent, but suffered a sharp fall in value by 30 percent caused by a 50 percent drop and low demand on world market.

Despite such previous and present mining activities, vast mineral wealth still remains untapped in the country. Iron ore reserves of both proven and problem nature total over 4 billion long tons of crude ore.
Several areas of alluvial gold and diamonds, with possible lode occurances, have been outline and modest exploration has been in progress to evaluate some of these resources which, from all indications, are large.

Apart from her minerable reserves of iron ore, diamonds and gold, Liberia also has important potential of reserves of barite, kyanite, phosphate, heavy mineral beach sands, bauxite, manganese, tim, chromiun and base-metals, sulfides. The rest of the text describing the mineral resources of Liberia has been prepared to include the historical background and the production of the principal mineral deposits of the country.

Exploration activities of the Geologic Survey and the private organizations have shown that all of the known economic gold deposits occur as alluvial deposits, along valley bottoms and in stream. The deposits are widely distributed over a total area of 10,000 square miles throughout the country, but are much more concentrated in Eastern and Western Liberia.

GOLD

The distribution pattern of the gold in the buried/active stream sediments shows some relationship with the north-east-trending, Precambrian schists/greenstone belts with and the underlying basement complex of Liberia and “Eburnean Ages”, and it is belived that these deposits are derived from the prolonged weathering from Pleistocene to recent times of small lenticular quartz veins (lode deposit) associated with these archeane rocks.
The placer gold occurs in a mixed alluvion of sand, gravel and boulders lying on the gneissic precambrian basement to varying depths down to 20 feet as in the Yambasey River Valley. In general, the occurrence of good values upstream with poor values further downstream suggests that the placers are local and of limited extent with only thin development of gravels and predominantly fine grined gold. There were about 116 mining properties and prospects, the majority of which were operated by African miners and abandoned in 1950s. Last year there were about 66 mining claims and 84 prospectors with prospecting licenses throughout the country, including Bentley International Trading Company which is a mechanized gold mine located near Zwedru.

Gold was found in lode deposits in the Tawalate District, at Wueju, east of Gondoja, near Zwedru and at Gbarmu, which occur as quartz veins. Most of these veins are narrow and very reach such as in the Zwedru area, which was only about 3 feet thick and assayed about 892 gm/tonne Au.

Reserves and Potential

It seems probable that many more placer deposits will be found in many part as the Tiehnpo and Kpo Range gold belts and Zoi area which can be worked profitably whith adeguate pumps and a simple other mechanical equipment.

There is ample evidence that Liberia has sufficient gold ore; roughly estimated to be greater than 1 million troy ozs.; planned exploration is used to test the many areas delineated, including the old prospects.

At the present time, practically 90% of the world’s gold mines are situated in areas of Precambrian rocks (shield areas) such as those of Liberia which are relatively favourable for the development of gold mines and for the persistence of the gold in depth. The recovery of certain associated minerals, occurring whith the gold, contain metals of strategic importance, will no do doubt increase the economic value of some of the law-grade placer deposits.

DIAMONDS

Though diamonds were discovered in the 1930’s in western Liberia by the Holland Syndacate, it was not until the early 1950’s that diamond digging started in Liberia. Digging started along the Lofa River near Wuesua and gradually spread downstream and to adjoining tributaries. The Kakata area was also mined in the early 1950’ and from by the late 1950’ digging had started at Gbapa and Bahn where there was a considerable rush. Minning by thousands of diggers extended in early 1960’s to the Kumgbor areas. During the early 1960’s attempts were made to form companies to mine the river beds and adjoining tareas by mechanized means. The Liberian Swiss Mining Company (LISWIMCO) and Globex Minerals, Inc. were actived in this venture. The most serious large scale exploration was, however, carried out by the Diamond Mining Corporation, Liberia (DCML) from 1962-66. DCLM was responsible for locating a number of Kimberlite dykes in western Liberia which are uneconomic in diamond content. In 1972 the U.N. Mineral Survey Team discovered a small kimberlite pipe whith no diamonds in it. More recently there are about 947 local alluvial diamond mining claims whith over 1000 registered prospectors.
The biggest diamond boom was records in 1959 with exports of 1,113,500 carats of both boart (industrial) and gemcuttable qualities.Thereafter, the diamond industry slowly declined to the present export levels of over 300,000 carats.

Reserves and Potential

To conclude this section, it must be pointed out that although available records show that over 13 million carats of diamonds have already been produced and exported from Liberia, field investigations indicate that Liberia still has modest reserves of diamonds (over 10 million carats) to last beyond the year 2000.

It is likely from the widespead occurrence of kimberlite indicator minerals in western Liberia, that the alluvial diamonds are derived from as yet undiscovered kimberlite pipes. Suchs pipes have been found in adjoining Sierra Leone and are now being mined.

Further exploration work in Liberia, especially in the Kumgbor areas, to try to discover new and diamondiferous Kimberlite dykes swarms and pipes, is obviously warranted. A road network will be needed to open up the Gola Forest Reserve for such investigations.

KIMBERLITE

About 13 kimberlite dykes generally trending N30 E were located by DCML in western Liberia from 1962 -’66. Some of the dykes are diamandiferous but not in economic quantities, while others perhaps have not been well sampled. On account of the abundance of large crystals of picro-ilmenite, the Kumgbor area holds the best potential for the occurrence of diamondiferous kimberlite pipes.

The Mano-Godua pipe was located by a U.N. mineral survey through a magnetometer survey and drilling in an area of known diamond diggings.

 

Cynthia Blandford Nash, Liberia’s Honorary Consul General accredited to the State of Georgia in the United States of America, ahead of a 15-member delegation, is in the country to among other things assess Liberia’s potential for tourism.

Liberian Beach at Lake Piso

The delegation has been holding discussions with key stakeholders in the tourism sector of the country. Members of the delegation have expressed happiness over Liberia’s potential for tourism, having observed some sites, which if built, could immensely contribute to the nation’s economy.

On Tuesday, Madam Blandford Nash and her delegation met and discussed with Assistant Information Minister for Tourism, Aissa Bright at the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism on Capitol Hill.

In an interview with reporters following the meeting, Madam Nash said the meeting with the Assistant Minister was in continuation of their discussions in exploring the tourism sector. She indicated that they were interested in travel and tours so that they will inform the African-American Community in the United States. The Consul General stated that it will give more historicity of USA-Liberia relationship.

According to her, many African-American do not understand the history of Liberia; something she noted that the delegation’s visit to Liberia was important because it will enable it to have more reports, which will help to build the nation in many ways.

“History shows that more than 80,000 freed African-American slaves returned and settled in Liberia in the early 1800s. This is our home; therefore, we need to love it,” Madam Nash maintained.

The Consul General, who said she came to Liberia when she was 18 years, then promised to negotiate a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the Ministry of Information and some partners in Georgia, for supports to the Liberia’s tourism sector.