Liberian Diaspora Leaders Concerned About State of Civility in Liberia

first_imgThe All Liberian Conference of Diaspora Leaders, representing the major Liberian regional umbrella organizations around the world has observed with grave concern the growing political tension in Liberia characterized by incendiary rhetoric  and occasional threats of violence.The Diaspora leadership representing the Union of Liberian Associations in the Americas (ULAA); the European Federation of Liberian Associations (EFLA); the Union of Liberian Associations in Ghana (ULAG); The Federation of Liberians in Australia (FOLICA); Conference of Liberian Organizations in the Southwestern United States (COLOSUS); and the Coalition of Concerned Liberians (CCL) issued the call in a joint statement at the close of a recent summit in Philadelphia Pennsylvania, USA.The leaders made specific reference to the recent threat by a band of former warlords against a legislator, Montserrado County District #10 representative, Yekeh Kolubah, which was later clarified and rescinded. They also commended the organizers of the June 7 rally for their pledge to conduct themselves peacefully with respect to the rule of law.“While the Diaspora Leadership recognizes that free expression of views and assembly are cardinal to the democratic process, it is also aware that the use of confrontational languages in the public space have the potential of creating misunderstanding and a hostile environment,” The Diaspora leadership noted.They further issued a call to all Liberians, including the government, the opposition and the media, as well as those on social media to be mindful of the fact that the nation is still emerging from years of instability. “Let us be mindful of our recent past and help strengthen our fragile democracy by maintaining an enduring environment of peaceful co-existence. In so doing,” the Diaspora leaders noted, “we must tone down the rhetoric as it is time that Liberians begin the process of talking with each other, rather than talking at each other to discuss national issues. We must reckon with the fact that there will always be divergent of views. Hence, tolerance and sobriety are key requirements in expanding the democratic environment.”The Diaspora Leadership Group then called upon Liberians to never again see violence as a pathway to resolving political problems. Rather, politicians, advocates, and citizens should take the constructive path organizing peacefully using the rule of Law to advance their political agenda.June 7 ProtestMeanwhile, the Diaspora Leadership Group is particularly pleased that organizers of the June 7 protest have emphasized their commitment to the rule of Law and pledged that the event will be peaceful. Similarly, the Diaspora leadership Group also welcome the expression by the government that it will uphold its obligations under the law by ensuring that Liberians exercise their right to freely assemble and petition their representatives in a peaceful manner.The Diaspora Leadership Group applauds the decision of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) NOT to stage a counter-demonstration against the June 7 protestors on the same day. This decision is not only wise, but largely removes any miscalculation that could lead to potential violence amongst protestors.Disassociation From Sanctions CallIn a related development, the Diaspora Leadership Group strongly distances its various organizations from a call made by few Liberians who styled themselves as “US Citizens and US Taxpayers” for the United States government to stop economic support to Liberia. The independent group recently made the call when they visited a Legislative staffer in the offices of the U.S. Speaker of the House of Representatives. The Diaspora leadership believes that at a time when Liberians at home are facing tremendous economic challenges, such a call by this group for an economic embargo on the Liberian people is unconscionable and may increase the suffering on ordinary Liberians. Meanwhile, the Union of Liberian Associations in the Americas (ULAA) has already taken the necessary actions in the corridors of the U.S. Government to counter what they described as an unwarranted request.Leaders of Liberian Diaspora organizations present at the summit included: Vamba Fofana, President, Union of Liberian Associations in the Americas (ULAA); Kingston Washington Wleh Sr., President, The European Federation of Liberian Associations (EFLA); Willie Kim Kamara, President, Conference of Liberian Organizations in the Southwestern United States (COLOSUS); John F. Lloyd, National Chairman, Coalition of Concern Liberians (CCL); Mohamed Salia Dukuly, President, The Federation of Liberian Communities in Australia (FOLICA), Inc.; and Julia Mardea Richards, President, United Liberian Association in Ghana (ULAG).Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) – Advertisement –last_img read more

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first_img RelatedWin a flight to spaceBranson boldly goes… and the pick of the rest of the week’s travel stories.Holiday cats: street cats of the world in picturesCalling all cat lovers! A collection of photos of beautiful ‘street cats’ around the world, from Italy to Japan.5 cool things to experience in JapanBlogger and budget traveller Kash Bhattacharya shares his top things to see and do in Japan. A ‘cat café’ is a cat-themed establishment serving drinks and maybe food, but where the main attraction is definitely cats. We present a purrfect nine of the best cat cafés around the world.Yes, it’s a café populated by cats. How it works is that you pay a fee, usually on an hourly rate, so they can pat and play with the cats in a form of ‘supervised indoor pet rental’. The café staff are usually human.The cat café is a relatively recent phenomenon. The very first opened in Taipei, Taiwan in 1998, drawing not only locals but tourists from Japan, a famously cat-loving country. Japan got its own cat café in 2004 when the first opened in Osaka, Now there at least 39 in Tokyo alone.Cat cafés have strict rules (for their customers) to keep their feline occupants in good health and order. For example, to make sure that the kitties are not disturbed too much, as they don’t like getting their tails pulled by small children and sometimes just want to be left alone for a snooze.1. Cat Café Neko no Niwa, SingaporeAs well as serving coffee, many cat cafés are on a mission to raise awareness of cat welfare issues, such as the plight of stray and abandoned cats. Cat Café Neko no Niwa in Singapore (‘neko’ is Japanese for cat; neko no niwa, cat garden) only adopt stray and rescue cats. Owners Sam and Sue say: “While cat cafes in Japan, Korea and Bangkok usually feature only pedigreed cats… all cats deserved to be loved, [including] the homeless and abandoned ones”. They ‘want to show that non-pedigreed cats can be beautiful and affectionate companions’. Its residents include Emma, ‘a rare find – only 15% of all white cats with blue eyes are not deaf’.http://www.youtube.com/embed/feamOL22tdI2. Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium, London, EnglandAfter a campaign to open a cat café in London, Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium opened in Shoreditch on 1 March 2014 with a cast of rescue cats. Meet Mue, Biscuit, Romeo and the other cats for a fee of £5 for a two-hour session. Already it is proving hugely popular and reservations are required – it is booked up until to June, but they plan to install a ‘kitty cam’ so you can see what they’re up to from afar.http://www.youtube.com/embed/yiUQq04nhwA3. Le Café des Chats, Paris, FranceWhile Parisians are better known as lovers of lap dogs than kitty cats, in 2013 Le Café des Chats opened in the Marais. It houses formerly abandoned and homeless cats, chosen for their ‘social character to the other cats and people’. Being Paris, it’s not just a tearoom, but also a restaurant, although serving charcuterie to the cats is not permitted.http://www.youtube.com/embed/lI9LdtTWjCk4. Temari no Ouchi / Nyafe Melange Tokyo, JapanTokyo’s cat cafés provide a service for the city’s many cat-loving residents who don’t have the space, or are not allowed, to keep a kitty of their own. Not only are there at least 39 cat cafés in Tokyo, but there are cafés specialising in rare breeds, black cats and… fat cats. Yes, really. Tokyo also caters for other animal-deprived souls – there are rabbit cafés too, while one cat café also has goats. Try Temari no Ouchi or Nyafe Melange, in the lovely neighborhood of Shibuya.http://www.youtube.com/embed/BUN8iEvUL3Y5. Il Neko Café, Turin, ItalyItaly’s first cat café opened on 5 April 2014 in Vanchiglia, Turin. The cats, including silver-and-white tabby Bernard, who arrived at Il Neko ‘as black as a chimney sweep’, each have their own space, plus a special communal play room with games and lots of catnip.http://www.youtube.com/embed/PhpSIjzcjf06. Purrfect Cat Café, Penang, MalaysiaGeorge Town, Penang’s trendy tech hub, has a new attraction – a cat café. Star of the show at the Purrfect Cat Café is Snowy, the café’s mascot, a white female with one blue and one green eye. Sooooooo cute!http://www.youtube.com/embed/lKmz1oNA-kg7. Café Neko, Vienna, AustriaVienna is the spiritual home of the coffee house, but sachertorte is not the only sweetness to be enjoyed in Vienna’s emporiums of delight. Coo over Viennese cats Sonja, Thomas, Momo, Moritz and Luca at katzen kaffeehaus Café Neko. Having a Japanese owner, it’s the place to try such traditional refreshments as bancha (Japanese roasted tea), and while sachertorte is not on the menu, apparently they do a quite magnificent chocolate cake – if spending time with Sonya isn’t sweet enough.http://www.youtube.com/embed/hevWSo9qaO88. Purr Cat Café Club, Bangkok, ThailandBangkok’s Purr Cat Café Club, owned by sitcom actress Rattanarat Uataweekul, houses 14 Persians, as well as a cat beautician and a shop selling ‘cute feline outfits’ (not sure if these are for the cats or the customers). The cat rules say ‘don’t poke them, tease them, pick them up or feed them human cake’.http://www.youtube.com/embed/f-hanjJMiqo9. La Gatoteca, Madrid, SpainMuch as they’d like to house many more poor, needy kitty cats, La Gatoteca can only cater for 15 furry friends, but they aim to find forever homes for all the paws that pad through their doors. Their current residents include Pulguita, a tiny street cat with a penchant for licking, and ‘beautiful blonde’ Pancho, who lived in an abandoned plot with lots of friends, until it got closed down and he had to be rescued.http://www.youtube.com/embed/IqPkEPnM98oFor a further list of present and soon-to-open cat cafes (such as Cat Cafe Kačių Kavinė in Vilnius, Lithuania and crowd-funded KitTea in San Francisco, see Wikipedia.If you liked this, we know you’ll like:Holiday cats: street cats of the world in picturesHave you been to a cat café? Tell us about it in the comments section below.ReturnOne wayMulti-cityFromAdd nearby airports ToAdd nearby airportsDepart14/08/2019Return21/08/2019Cabin Class & Travellers1 adult, EconomyDirect flights onlySearch flights Maplast_img read more