-As Pres. George Weah promises Gov’t full support to Crusaders for Peace.
As unique as it is, the peerless Golden Image Award which has grown to become one of the most sought-after accolades in its domain, was recently held in Monrovia, and as always, it left exquisite memories, and acknowledged the commitment of scores of proactive individuals, as it embodies the values and principles it stands for.
In its current environment of recognition and achievement, the Golden Image Award holds much prestige and significance and this esteemed accolade is bestowed upon individuals that have demonstrated exceptional commitment, innovation, and impact in their respective fields. With a rich history and a rigorous selection process, the Golden Image Award has become synonymous with excellence and serves as a benchmark for success.
The late hours of Thursday, July 20,, 2023, embraced individualsat the Monrovia City Hall Ball room, with a magnificent euphoria. This led to an instant verbal veneration of the award by the President of the Republic of Liberia, after he hailed the initiative, and described it as a national pride that promotes peace, unity, reconciliation, and development, and guaranteed his government support to the Liberia Crusaders for Peace (LCP).
President George Manneh Weah and Chief Convener of the Golden Image Award, committed government’s full support to ensure the successful hosting of this premier internationally recognized award program.
Speaking at the 13th Golden Image award Program,President Weah, admits ceaseless applauds, rained praises on the Event Planner, Founder of the Golden Image Award program, Ambassador Juli Endee and the Crusaders for Peace in the promotion of peace and reconciliation across Liberia admits all odds.
The Liberian Chief Executive, President George Manneh, described the Crusaders for Peace Executive Director, Ambassador Juli Endee as a true patriot and a woman of peace, adding that these activities bring hopes and reinvigorate into all Liberians the enthusiasm to continue to collectively work for peace and national reconciliation.
At the same time, President George Manneh Weah has reiterated his unwavering commitment to hold free, fair and transparent elections in October this year. He, however maintained that this can be achieved with the collective efforts of all Liberians irrespective political or tribal differences.
Founded in September 2010 by the Liberia Crusaders for Peace and the Visionary Juli Endee, the GIA has grown into a premier national event and has been officially captured as part of the Independence Day activities in Liberia, with President Weah as the Convener and Former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as the Face behind the Golden image.
According to the Golden Image Secretariat, the most merited individuals, organizations;governments and donor institutions that have made the most contributions to peace, sanity, and the transformation of Liberia over the years are beingselected through an intensive vetting process and recognized for their enormous contributions to peace in Liberia and the world.
During the ceremony, a well built and decorated monument/portrait of President George Manneh Weah, designed and built by the Golden Image Secretariat and the Liberia Crusaders for Peace, was unveiled by Finance Minister, Samuel Tweah.
Minister Tweah extolled President Weah for his enormous development initiatives and at the same time, improving the livelihood of the Liberian people. He also lauded Ambassador Juli Endee for promoting peace and unity in Liberia.
The awardees of the 13th GIA were drawn from three levels, three from the County level, four from the national Level and four from the International Level.
Liberia Foreign Minister Dee Maxwell Saah Kimayah and Deputy House Speaker Fonati Kofa are some of the recipients of the 13th edition of the GIA Award.
Meanwhile, the visionary Founder and Event Planner of the Golden Image award, Culture Ambassador Juli Endee, has urged Liberians to continue to hold the principles of peace and Unity the country now enjoys, emphasizing that as Liberia goes for election this year, it is incumbent upon all to work together for peace and Unity.
Providing an overview of the occasion, Ambassador Juli Endee said GIA is intended to recognize the achievements of individuals and institutions that have made sacrificial contributions to the social and economic development of the country and their srecognition should inspire others to make the needful impact in society.
From her end, Ms. Benica Elliot, the President of the Federation of Liberian Youth (FLY), who also served as the Keynote Speaker, articulated that the significance of the award, especially in such a time.
While the Golden Image Award has made it its duty to support the rebranding of our nation and throw lights on the sacrifices and contributions of people from all walks of Life, she said it’s germane Liberians stayed govern as a nation bounded by laws and principles with adherence to strong cultures that serve well, judge well, and distribute resources equally.
“If you ask me what role each of us can play, is to continue to use the nature of the Golden Image Award (GIA) to promote actions against hate speeches, spreading of mis-information and dis-information, support the independence of the media at all time. Youth access to the justice system must be strengthened and the rule of law must act clean on every matter before it,” she emphasized.
Furthermore, she encouraged the need for the award continue to symbolize the commitment to rebuild the image of the nation, and the work of the organizers cut across borders flying the colors of the nations and promoting the Pan African spirit and African Renaissance.
“We are grateful for the award, in as much Liberians are committed to true service, we will appreciate that the government of Liberia be reminded of Section 16.1 of the Decent Work Act, which explains that every Liberian working in both private and public institutions is entitled to a minimum wage of US $0.68 per hour or US$5.50 per day”.
From a youthful standpoint, she stressed that the young people of this nation must not be used as foot-soldiers for political parties.
The female speaker, believes the youth of this nation are far stronger, @we are stronger and ready to conquer. The few given opportunities have shown the needs that we can rise above the stereotypes, misconceptions, inadequate resources that confront us”.
She added, “Also, We will not be afraid to ask ourselves how important it is to stay peaceful and work towards using our youthful energy in closing the gaps reported by the 2022 Global Hunger Index which ranks Liberia 113th out of 121 countries. We will take the lead in the global competition to produce our own food and feed the world, break the barriers and make a phenomenal entry in the world of technology, education, security, sports, and etc”.
According to her, her leadership, and as president of the Federation of Liberian Youth-Fly, has embarked on this journey to promote youth in Agriculture. Few months ago, she said they launched as pilot a Project to begin the National Youth Agriculture Farm across two counties, with support from the CHINA-AID and the Ministry of Agriculture. This step, according to her, has changed the narrative that the Federation of Liberia Youth will no longer be seen as an institution of violence, institution of press statements, protests among other.
“In as much the integrity of youth matters, our administration has committed itself under the rebrand campaign of the Federation of Liberia Youth to regain the trust and confidence of partners and donors. FLY is now being accountable and transparent and has continued to invest in financial security, system and control with more emphasis on the need to invest more in youth empowerment”.
Ms. Elliot assured that the youth of Liberia will not hesitate to present and follow-up with the blueprint of a new Liberia that must boast of an industrialized nation with a mature and sophisticated economic displayed by well measured Human Development Index (HDI).
Ms. Elliot used this medium to follow-up on the alert that more than 15,000 Government workers still make below the minimum wage of US $150 dollars as mandated by the Decent Work Act, most of them being youth. With that, “We call on our beloved President and hold him by his words that it would be resolved. That our brothers and sisters will have their just benefit and stayed protected by law. That Aunty Mary Brown, a resident of West Point would smile each day.
At the same time, we appreciate the government for the recent passage of the Drug Laws”.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, The Farmington Declaration marked a great step towards securing the commitment needed to uphold our peace. Why we would want to appreciate the National Elections Commission, the government of Liberia and the opposition parties, we call for all parties to reflect on the next step that support the declaration. The Federation of Liberia Youth-FLY sees this important and has launched the BoutuoDeclaration with founding from the European Partnership for Democracy”. She said Liberians must not compromise the peace of the majority. “We caution that you do not enter the political process feeling that you will be cheated”.
She emphasized, “Today let our voices be heard, not through the voices of conflict but through the power of peace. May this election be a commitment to a brighter and more harmonious future. Let the spirit of the award continues to shine it light and present the flowers in recognition of the little work we do showcasing commitment and sacrifices”.