A one-day reconciliation dialogue under the theme: “Post Elections: Peace, Reconciliation and Youth Engagement” has ended in Paynesville, Liberia with a call for young people to manage expectations, promote peace and reconciliation, and explore ways to sustain peace in Liberia.
“If we must have a strong and vibrant society, the youth who constitute 65 percent of the population must be considered as priority for national reconciliation and social unity,” Ms. Leelai M. Kpukuyou, Secretary General of the Liberia Business Association (LIBA). Speaking the topic “Building Social Cohesion among Liberian Youth” Ms. Kpukuyou said, young people are the backbone of every nation, and therefore, they must be properly nurtured and mentored with responsibilities of societal values.
For his part the Vice Chairperson of the Civil Society Council of Liberia, Mr. D. Nyandeh Sieh Sr, said young people are effective agents of change for the growth and development of any society. He therefore called on Liberian youth to muster the courage in promoting sustainable peace in Liberia.
Also speaking at the event was a representative of the European Union, Ms. Agnieszka Napierala. Ms. Napierala appealed to the youth of Liberia to remain engaged in affecting positive change in the development of peace and democracy in Liberia. She therefore pledged her organization’s commitment to help Liberia in fostering peace and security.
Other speakers of the event included, Former Deputy Foreign Minister, Hon. Thomas Kaydor spoke on the topic: Understanding government and managing high expectations, Rev. Dr. Tolbert Thomas Jallah, spoke on the Role of youth in promoting national reconciliation, Mr. John O. Kollie, Founder and Executive Director, Liberia Media for Democratic Initiatives (LMDI) spoke on The Important of Effective Communication in building sustainable peace and development in Liberia. Others were Mr. Bennett Ben, Program Assistant ECOWAS Emergency Response Mechanism (ERM) and Mr. Peter Forkpayea Zogolee, Former Deputy Commissioner of Administration, Liberia Immigration Services (LIS).
The dialogue was hosted by Camp for Peace Liberia in partnership with ECOWAS Emergency Response Mechanism (ERM) with support from the European Union. The dialogue brought together 35 participants including students, youth representatives from various political parties, representatives of the Federation of Liberia Motorcyclist Transport Union, National Teachers Association of Liberia, Liberia Marketing Association, Liberia National Drivers Union, researchers, academicians and other development partners.
The overall objective of the dialogue was to exchange ideas and echo a way forward for national reconciliation and development in Liberia.
Speaking at the close of the dialogue was Mr. B. Abel Learwellie, Executive Director of Camp for Peace Liberia. Mr. Learwellie admonished participants to be mindful, loving and patriotic in moving their country forward. He said, we should all remember Liberia is all that we have and no one can make it better except us.