Finally, the Liberia Music Union will go for elections this year. This might seem like really good news, but here’s the twist: only 22 persons will get a chance to vote. I am not eligible to vote neither does CIC, Grace Hawa Weah, Christopher, Bucky Raw, Boakai, Lyee K Bility and many more of you. The body responsible for conducting election says only 22 persons in the entire country has perfectly matched all the eligibility requirements. This seems really awkward. An election that the entire industry is waiting on will be decided by only 22 persons? Damn!
It easy to blame the people responsible for holding the elections but the burden of responsibility falls more on the major stakeholders in the industry, especially those who participated in elections on the music ticket. Where areBlue, O’Neal, Takun and the wonderful gospel songstress, Kanvee in all this?
Djblue, O’Neal Roberts, Takun J, and Kanvee Adams owe a whole lot to this industry. They almost earned a seat at the Legislature on the backs of musicians and they amassed popular support because almost everybody thought they had real plans for the industry. They did tell us they had plans for the industry but it feels like they easily forgot this plan after the elections.
This election is crucial to the survival of the industry. It is the election of our lives. Influential people with plans for the industry will have to halt the passiveness and engage the process, to ensure that whoever wins, receives a popular mandate.
A person can only lead when others accept the Individual as their leader, and he/ she has only as much authority as their subjects given. All of the brilliant ideas in the world cannot save a kingdom if no one will listen to them. Howbeit, The risk of having elections with 22 voters is that those elected will not have popular support and hence will be powerless to effect real change. Another risk is that people will have an easy ability to forge an alternative music union, splitting the industry in half and then we all fail together. People don’t take the industry seriously because they really do think we are an unserious bunch. We got to prove them wrong by holding a fair process where everybody will have an equal chance at participation.
Filmmaker – Prinze Whyee
Prinze Whyee is a multiple award-winning filmmaker from Liberia, currently residing in Pennsylvania, USA. He is a writer, director, producer and entrepreneur with an undying passion for storytelling.
Prinze earned his Bachelor of Science in Communication Media degree with interest in Television and Film Production from Indiana University of Pennsylvania after a stint at the Lincoln University in Pennsylvania, where he majored in Business Administration.
Whyee has gained the recognition and admiration of film festivals and media institutions around the globe. His films, Killing me softly, Transition, and The Blessed Curse have picked up multiple nominations and awards at prestigious festivals and award shows including the Nollywood Film critics awards in Los Angeles California, Golden Crown awards in Abidjan the Ivory Coast, The Liberian Entertainment Awards, New Liberia FM Enterprising filmmaker Award in the USA, just to name a few.
2016 was a big year for Director Prinze Whyee as his film MUDA: When time is all that matters garnered a staggering thirteen nominations, including Best Director. Out of the thirteen nominations, MUDA won three awards for Best Screenplay, Best Promising Actress (Jacinth Sutphin) and Best Supporting Actress (Tanya Thompson)
In 2017, Transition starring actor David M. Raine, who played a security guard to the President’s wife in House of cards a television series, was nominated seven times at the African Oscars commonly known as the NAFCA.
Mr. Whyee is the Founder and CEO of Ducor Media Films, a full service multimedia and nationally recognized film and Production Company based in Philadelphia Pennsylvania.
Picture Credit: Prinze Whyee
Filmmaker – George Nyanzeor
George Nyanzeor is a filmmaker based in Monrovia, Liberia, who has worked as an editor on three films centred on the unprecedented Ebola outbreak in Liberia. His films have been screened around the country in film festivals and he’s currently a student filmmaker at the Liberia Film Institute. His dream is to be a documentary and fiction filmmaker, creating educational films that would expose the Liberian culture to the world.
Photo credit: theaccountabilitylab.com
Filmmaker – Dorcas Pewee
Dorcas Pewee is a Liberian filmmaker and one of the first graduates of the Accountability Film School in Liberia. Having lost her family in Liberia’s civil war, she had turned to hustling on the streets of Monrovia to survive. She was discovered by Divine Anderson who brought her to the film school. Dorcas is mostly interested in producing documentary and fictional films that addresses women’s issues.
She was a production assistant on Accountability Lab’s Integrity Idol contest and her short film Say It tackles sexual exploitation. Her greatest hope is that her work will reach a wide audience and bring about positive societal changes as a result.
Picture Credit: Dorcas Pewee
Maurice Terziq Gayflor (CIC)
Born in Brewerville, Montserrado County Liberia, Maurice Terziq Gayflor nicknamed CIC (Commander in Chief) is one of the country’s popular musicians. CIC is a songwriter, singer and rapper who invented a new brand of music called kolo-pop, a blend of Afropop spiced with his local language and Liberian colloquialisms.
CIC has a John Buttay, Peking John, Brother and Advice. Brother, which featured Casimoney, one of Liberia’s finest lyricists, rose to number 1 on Liberia’s music charts. For a time, it displaced All Hail, Liberia Hail as the country’s national anthem. Advice had a similar effect in the country. CIC was nominated as New Best Artists at the Liberia Entertainment 2016 and won Tunes Liberia New Best artist and Collaboration of the year 2016. At the Liberia Music Awards, 2018, CIC emerged Male Artist of the Year and Hipco Artist of the Year. CIC won in the latter category at the Liberia Entertainment Award, 2018
The Mining Engineering undergraduate and MTN Liberia Brand ambassador is vocal on domestic violence and abuse of women.
Picture Credit: Victor
A naturalized Liberian, African visual artist – Meskora Samuella Amoussou
Meskora Samuella Amoussou is an African visual artist based in Liberia. Her parentage is Togolese but Meskora is a naturalized Liberian. Her passion for photography was inspired by her father. His love for capturing family moments was a great motivation for her. A self-taught artist, Meskora believes Africa has so much beauty and has made it her passion to show it to the world.
Art is her life and her life is art and Meskora has chosen photography, videography, digital collage and character designs as the media through which she expresses her creativity.
Photo credit: Meskora
No stranger to the world of words, Sianah Nalika DeShield
No stranger to the world of words, Sianah Nalika DeShield has utilized her passion and affinity for writing to empower others and advocate for a better world. Having found a love of writing at an early age, Sianah once dreamed of taking her talents to the world. With an early focus on literature, language, English, and History, her skills developed as a base from which she would launch into socio-political advocacy and beyond.
In her beloved home of Liberia, the author found a discrepancy in not only a lack of writers in her country but of unequal opportunities for young people. Her desire to work with youth and advocate for her homeland compelled her to pursue Political Science as an undergraduate degree at the United Methodist University. Her time spent as a freshman and sophomore class representative not only led to her appointment to the Liberia National Students Union (LINSU) but also afforded her the opportunity to experience first hand the dire need for young people in Liberia. Working in the social sciences opened the door for Sianah to help others, promote advocacy, and utilize her writing skills to effect change.
With no interest in slowing down, the author went on to pursue a career in Administration. Her skills led her from Liberia to Ghana as a 2014 MILEAD Fellow and then on to Cyprus where she pursued a Masters Degree in International Relations at the Eastern Mediterranean University. It is then that she refocused her personal and professional goals back to the world of creative writing and married her love of language, advocacy, and international relations in a foundation where she can mentor young writers in her home country.
Once the creative dreamer with the hopes of bestseller- lists, Sianah has developed her skills around a lifelong passion for social change and creative development. Now she is dedicated to creating opportunities for young writers in Liberia that she did not have. Still, as passionate as ever about her own writing, the author can now add novelist to her long list of accomplishments and hopes to become one of the most prolific writers Africa has ever known.
Photo credit: Albert Karyah
Poetic Lyrics – Lazarus F. Siafa
Lazarus F. Siafa is a Liberian-American, who immigrated to the U.S. (Ohio) with his family at the age of 3, seeking refuge from what would turn into a 14-year civil war that devastated and changed the entire course of history of his beautiful Liberia.
Profoundly grateful to God and the US, Siafa took his second chance at life in the United States with both hands, enlisting with the Military right after High School, serving a combined period of 8 years in the Army and Marines respectively. It was during this chapter of his life that his affinity and interest in poetry and writing were ignited. His Instagram account is a robust spread of poetic lyrics. An aspiring New York Times Best Selling author, Lazarus is currently working with a publishing company in preparation for publishing his very first poetry book titled ‘Parables Beneath The Palm Trees’.
Photo credit: Visual Artistry Photography
Mariam Tuzee Toure speaks out on the celebration of citizens for corruption.
Her message has power and important message in it. And if what she’s speaking about is true then she’s a She Hero.
Every time a public official uses public money to build a mansion of his own, he denies a child somewhere access to school. His action threatens the safe delivery of a pregnant woman somewhere. His action stops a new police station or court house from construction or being Constructed.
So while you’re celebrating the beauty and glare of corruption in Liberia, you should also weep for that poor child who has been denied access to education.
Fertile land of 1847
Liberia has faced a lot of trouble since it’s independence but due to the fact we have politicians who don’t see what the citizens need and desire most, the citizens suffer for food, and they (government) don’t encourage investors to put more into agriculture. Every new president that comes in power will say, “Let’s Go Back To the Soil.” This statement is on almost all billboard of a new president. This brought out the power of citizens to put their mind on growing their own food and eating what they grow. Over 12 years Liberians has been eating what they planted, pepper, cassava, potatoes and other things, even local rice, that are planted right here in Liberia.
Knowing that our land is fertile and rich, we noticed that whatsoever planted grow well, even in the sandy places.
Look below and see a cassava and the length. This is 4’7″.
This should not be a Strange thing, most time we visit villages in Bomi, Cape Mount and Lofa county we notice lot of these. People are working hard plenting crops and vegetables to help ease the hunger around the county, but means of transportation is one of the biggest factor putting Liberia backward in getting fresh things to the market.
I think there’s a need to invest more into agriculture.