Contaminated Rainwater Killing Liberians Says Canadian Scholar

An international researcher has called for harvest of rainwater and increased hygiene practices in Liberia.
Madam Joelle Gordon from the Canada based Thunderbird School of Global Management said though Liberia is blessed with the most consistent rain in the World, its people were increasingly sick and dying of contaminated rainwater and other waterborne diseases.
Delivering the keynote address at the closing program of the New Hope Academy on Peace Island in Paynesville on Sunday, July 7, 2013, Madam Gordon added that the biggest challenge facing Liberians today is access to clean and safe drinking water.
To help remedy the problem, the visiting international scholar who is also head of the research think-tank, African Rain, said she has been working with local communities, non-governmental organizations and the Government of Liberia to prioritize and ensure the harvest of rainwater and increased hygiene practices in the country.
She told the students and other citizens to learn everything about water, especially rainwater harvesting and other hygienic behaviors in the improvement of the country’s healthcare system.
Madam Gordon who is also a specialist in Finance, Country Risk Management and Latin American History, also encouraged the students to pursue education in all spheres of life that would make them assets and not liabilities in the global community with increasing technological and other challenges.
She also told Liberian students and youth to demonstrate hard work, honesty, sincerity, commitment, dedication and other moral virtues in their pursuit of education.
Madam Gordon, a Canadian national holds two Masters level degrees including an MBA in Finance and Country Risk Management from the prestigious Thunderbird School of Global Management and the other in Brazilian Military History.
A mother of a 22-year old son, Madam Gordon, who obtained her undergraduate degree from the Calgary University in Canada, is an avid educator and social worker with wealth of international experience.
Raised in the city of Calgary in the Western region of Canada, Madam Gordon, who is the oldest of four children-with one brother and two sisters, is also the first in her family to graduate from university and do post-graduate studies.
She has now chosen to make Liberia her home and to work with the Liberian people to bring running water to everyone, saying “I have traveled worldwide and have chosen to make Liberia my home. “My passion for Liberia is rooted in the fact that I was the first college graduate in my family, a challenge which is common to most Liberian households.”
In his valedictory address, student Lassana Becese, called on Liberian students and graduates to be nation builders and not nation destroyers.
He challenged them to demonstrate respect for teachers, parents, and to subscribe to the rule of law and not violence in society.
“A nation builder is always eager to learn positively; a nation builder is not a troublemaker; not a talkative; not a warlord; not a person that wears indecent clothes such as (‘junction pants and sackings’”), he told the gathering.
“A nation builder is not a person that only learns to be politician whose only aim is to get into power and forget his/her people that gave him/her the power; A nation builder is not a boy or girl that refuses to come to school when the opportunity is given to him/her; A nation builder is not a student that comes to school late or sits in class and causes noise to distract others from learning,” he among other things, pointed out.
The New Hope Academy’s closing program on Sunday also coincided with the 18th Graduation Ceremony of the K-2 Class with students Lassana Becese of K-II, Musa Sheriff of ABC and Mafata Sheriff of Nursery serving as “all over dux” with the Grade Point Averages (GPA) of 95%; 94.5 %; and 94% respectively.
Meanwhile, the Proprietor of New Hope Academy, Augustine Arkoi, has called on the Government of Liberia (GOL) to ensure proper regulation and coordination of educational programs in the country.
Mr. Arkoi also described as contradictory and regrettable on the part of the Liberian educational authorities their encouragement of graduation of secondary schools in the absence of the WAEC exam results.
According to Mr. Arkoi, such graduation in the absence of the WAEC exam results grossly undermines the valedictory role of the regional educational body of which Liberia is a member.
He, at the same time, criticized authorities of WAEC-Liberia who he said in recent years, have been indefinite in the release of such exams result schedules, which according to him, confirms recent statement by President Ellen Jonson Sirleaf that the country’s educational system is a “mess.”


Author: D K Sengbeh

Danicius Kaihenneh Sengbeh (author of Sengbeh's Weblog) is a respected and renowned Liberian journalist, poet and writer with with journalism experience since 2001, of working both as a mainstream journalist and a communication/media consultant in Liberia. He is Secretary General of the Press Union of Liberia (elected Dec 2013). He was Assistant Secretary General of the Union Dec 2011 to Dec 2013. He is also Editor-In-Chief of The Informer Newspaper—one of Liberia’s credible dailies. Before joining the Informer, Danicius had served as reporter, chief reporter, sub-editor and News Editor at The Independent Newspaper between 2002 and 2006. Before then, he was reporter at the defunct Patriot Newspaper and Kiss FM 2001-2002. Danicius is a UN Media Fellow and Liberia’s first UN Medal Award-winning journalist for his contribution to journalism and for being the second Liberian journalist in 15 years to qualify for and successfully attended the United Nations’ Reham Al-Farra Memorial Journalist Fellowship Program in New York and Geneva, Switzerland in 2012. He earned a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in Mass Communication and Sociology from the University of Liberia and a Diploma in Journalism from the International School of Journalism. He holds several awards and recognitions both in and outside of journalism, and carries dozens of certificates in journalism and communication from studies in Ghana, China, United States and Switzerland, among others. He volunteers as Chair of the Information and Communication Committee of his local Bardnersville community. He can be quickly reached via (+231) 886586531/777586531/777464018/

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