Flag Day Orator Suggests Ways For National Reconciliation


The Inquirer
Monrovia, Liberia

Distributed by

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

August 26, 2004

The national orator at the formal program commemorating Liberia’s 157th Flag Day, Madam Mary Brownell says for Liberians to reconcile, they must transcend from conflict and not conflict management and denounce violence and war, as well as prevent the stock pile of arms, as Patrick K. Wrokpoh reports.

Delivering the oration yesterday at the Monrovia City Hall, Madam Brownell said in the process of reconciliation, enmity and alienation are replaced by peace and fellowship, stressing that to reconcile, one has to forgive and forget.

Dwelling on the official theme for this year’s National Flag Day, “Disarmament, Reconciliation and Peace,” Madam Brownell said reconciliation is a change between persons, God and Man and it involves three important elements.

She identified these elements as confession of one’s sins to God and to anyone who has been offended, as well as forgiveness by God and by the one who has been offended.

She named the last element as the establishment of a new relationship between the offender and God and between the offender and offended party.

Madam Browell who is one of seven commissioners of the Election Commission of Liberia, stressed that for reconciliation to be achieved, Liberians must prevent domestic violence, including violence against women and children as well as try to educate the mis-educated to reduce the country’s high illiteracy rate.

She added that the youth of the country must be trained and taught trades while at the same time, the guns be taken from their hands.

Madam Brownell who is also a Liberian educator, pointed out that unless Liberians as a people deal with the issues of violence and the tradition of lies as a nation, lasting peace, reconciliation, unity and the process of national healing can not be achieved.

She recounted how the nation’s history continues to replay slavery, violence, lies, ignorance, oppression and sycophancy, adding that it is now time for the nation to peacefully get freed of arms and become a society of love, justice, freedom and have respect of all to adhere to.

For his part, Deputy Education Minister Dr. Marcus Dahn who spoke on behalf of his boss, called for coordination between the Education Ministry, UNMIL’s DDRR Section and the NCDDRR.

He called on the leadership of the country to redouble its efforts to prepare for the future prosperity of the nation.

© 2004: This article is copyrighted by The Inquirer newspaper (Monrovia, Liberia) and distributed by The Perspective (Atlanta, Georgia). All rights reserved.