Having gone through the lectures on protocol and etiquette, the 10 men and women, who recently walked out of the doors of the Liberia Institute of Protocol and Etiquette (LIPE), were again reminded of the importance of their profession as protocol officers by their keynote speaker, the Nigerian Ambassador to Liberia.
Ambassador Chigozie F. Obi-Nnadozie, on Friday, October 9, highlighted to the graduates that they are not protocol officers who are just there to usher guests during functions or ceremonies, but they also serve as bridges between individuals, organizations and States.
Protocol rules are based on the principles or codes of civility (politeness), said Amb. Obi-Nnadozie.
She clarified that the word ‘protocol’ has two meanings — one in the legal sense and the other, the diplomatic sense. She stressed that the diplomatic aspect of protocol to which the graduates probably may all aspire, “refers to a set of rules, procedures, conventions and ceremonies that relate to relations between countries.”
The Nigerian Envoy, who is the first female diplomat to represent her nation in Liberia, further explained that, “In general protocol presents the recognized and generally accepted system of international courtesies.”
With the aim of improving diplomatic and social relationships, protocol and etiquette practices have recently adopted simplicity and practicality, moving away from old, rigid and overstretched customs, while still maintaining their civility, she observed.
Earlier, Ms. Michaelyn George, a member of the fifth graduating class who gave the student’s perception of the training program said, “our new found characters are all examples of what a great time we had and what the importance of protocol and etiquette really is.
“We have become better versions of ourselves,” she added.
The founder and director of LIPE, Ambassador Dr. J. Adolphus During, said the academic 2013/14 had been a challenging year for the institute.
Ambassador During, who is a veteran in matters of protocol and etiquette, said the class began in March of 2013 with an enrollment of 12 persons and lectures were conducted in protocol and etiquette, interpersonal relationships, the importance of civility, personal development, behavior and attitude.
His institution’s mission is to educate and cultivate individuals on protocol and etiquette in the highest professional manner. “The foundation of manners gives people of all ages an opportunity to learn and practice leadership skills urgently needed in our society today,” a line of LIPE’s vision statement reads.
Dr. During awarded diplomas to the 10 graduates of the 5th class. The 11th graduate, Adolphus F. Hoff, who was a protocol officer assigned at the Ministry of Information, was awarded his diploma posthumously. The deceased’s widow received his diploma and cried profusely whenever her late husband’s name was mentioned.
The other graduates are Juliana Noah, Michaelyn George, Dorothea Sesay, Florence Parker During, Venoria Crayton, Vera Hood and Weedor Ballayan. Others are Quemellan George, Alvin Solomon and Samuel Konah.
Guests that attended the program included Acting Foreign Minister B. Elias Shoniyin, former Foreign Minister Olubanke King Akerele, Ghanaian Ambassador Kodjo Asimeng Wedee, Representative Malai G. Gbogar, Gbarpolu County and a host of others.