The Isaac A. David High School put up a brilliant performance to crush the hopes of Sammy Dukuly High School, to win the just ended Montserrado Inter-High School debate competition, with a final score of 78-77.
It was the help of the first, second and partly third speaker, whose brilliant arguments tore apart the Sammy Dukuly team after they made a little slipup in their arguments, that garnered the win for Isaac A. David High School.
The score line could have been a lot worse for Sammy Dukuly if their second and third speakers had not try harder, with better responses to the Isaac A. David team’s argument, which helped to keep them alive in the debate.
In the last minutes of the debate, Sammy Dukuly tried to tweak the game in their favor, but all their efforts were halted by some strong arguments from Isaac A. David. Just like last year’s final, it was a single point lead from the presentation of arguments which proved decisive for the winner to get the needed victory.
The final debate between the schools was held at Monrovia City Hall on Sunday, with Sammy Dukuly on the affirmative side of the argument, and Isaac A. David on the negative, as both schools resolved on the topic: “Liberia’s Under-development is Equally Tied Down to the Quality of Presidential Leadership.”
Though Isaac A. David won the debate, the audience said the teams’ performances did not match last year’s final between ex-champion Len Miller High School and St. Teresa Convent High School, which was rated as one of the best debate finals in Liberia.
After the game, Isaac A. David captain Patricia Sapleh said, “The debate was a tough one and truly remarkable indeed. However, from the kickoff of the final, we knew that victory was certain. All we were looking for was just a cheap mistake from the opponent team, which came into reality; that give us the win.”
In a very sad tone, Sammy Dukuly captain Melvin Flomo said, “I cannot still believe that we lost the game; however, the team feel happy to reach this far. I considered the game fair enough, and respect the result.”
The winner of this year’s competition will walk away with a cash prize of US$2,000, second place US$1,000, third place US$750, and fourth place US$500; however, the organizer, Devine Event Management and Consultancy, deferred the payments to this week.
Also, in the third and fourth place encounter, Paynesville’s Seventh Day Adventist defeated New Destiny 85-84 on the topic: “Corruption Can Be Minimized in Liberia.”
On their various observations, the judges encouraged students to fully understand the subject matter of the argument, and to also do critical analysis of the issues from all points.
This year’s Most Eloquent Speaker award was received by Fadilla A. Shaibani of the J.W. Harris School in Logan Town, and Satta F. Sheriff won the Most Valuable Player; however, certificates were awarded to seven of the Most Eloquent Speaker contestants.
Also, the debate final was streamed live on YouTube and FaceBook, which recorded more than 100 views.
This year’s debate competition featured 80 schools, and was sponsored by Cellcom, who was the chief sponsor, and others, including Cummings Africa Foundation, Sam Barbecue and Daily Observer as media partners.
The guest list in the full house event included Dr. Kimmie Weeks, Associate Jamesetta Wolokolie and Sie-A-Nygene Youh among others.