The government of Liberia through its bicentennial committee has officially launched its activities leading to the celebration of Liberia 200 years of existence.
The bicentennial is expected to keep off from January 7, 2022, to December 10, 2022, with the official opening ceremony expected to take place on February 14, 2022, and will be held under the theme, “The Land of Return” and will feature the displays of cultural activities, speeches and approaches that address Liberia’s problems including economic hardship.
Foreign Minister Maxwell Saah Kemayah who is the Chairperson of the Committee said, the Program will be celebrated with the slogan, “The Lone Star Forever Stronger Together”
He said the slogan shows Liberia as the Lone Star nation and the first independent black republic in Africa, stating that despite Liberia recent bitter history of conflict, the country has restored peace and stability and it remains stronger together as a nation through democratic governance.
He further stated that the Steering Committee theme and slogan are designed to support the objective of the Bi-centennial commemoration which is to celebrate the Country rich cultural heritage and showcase the country’s tourism and investment to reunite and reconnect African Americans in the United States and another black within the diaspora to their cultural identity in Liberia.
He said the President of Liberia His Excellency Dr George Manneh Weah is calling on all Liberians, local and international partners and the diaspora communities to participate in the historic events of the country’s 200 years celebration, noting that the National Steering Committee and other committees of the Bi-Centennial commemoration will ensure an inclusive measure to assure the success of the event.
At the same time, a member of the History Committee of the Bicentennial steering committee Dr William Allen has given the historic relevance of the Bicentennial Celebration.
Addressing the Ministry of Information Cultural Affairs and Tourism regular press briefing Thursday, Dr Allen said the Bicentennial celebration will be commemorated as it represents the day black Americans from the United States settled on the island known as Dozoa; which was subsequently renamed Providence Island.
He lamented that from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century, roughly 12 million enslaved Africans were forcibly placed in ships for the voyage to the “New World”, or the Americas, which is, North America, South America, Central America, and the Caribbean or the West Indies.
According to Dr Allen, approximately $2 million perished during the traumatic journey across the Atlantic ocean and survivors labour largely on plantations producing agricultural staples, including sugar, cotton, rice, and Coffey.
He said by the 1800s a small number had obtained freedom through various means; while others were emancipated for commendable services, such as, serving in the American war of independence and preventing disasters like arson.
Meanwhile, Dr Allen said the history means a lot for the Bicentennial, as such the government is articulating its goals by promoting Tourism and a positive climate for foreign investment, along with emphasizing Liberia’s pivotal contribution to the global black leadership or Pan-Africanism.