The Liberia National Tailors, Textiles, Garments and Allied Workers’ Union Incorporated (LNTTGAWU) over the weekend honored several prominent Liberians for their valuable contributions to the union’s operations.
Those honored included former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Central Bank of Liberia Executive Governor Milton A. Weeks, District #9 Representative Munah E. Pelham Youngblood, Deputy Foreign Minister D. Maxwell S. Kemayah, Chief Tamba Younda, former Board Chairman and founding member, ULAA president Vamba S. Fofana and Daily Observer Publisher Kenneth Y. Best.
LNTTGAWU vice president for operations, Ezekiel S. Kamara, lauded the honorees for their support to the Tailor Union which, he said, has been very helpful to the organization. He noted in particularly “wear your proud” philosophy and habit introduced by former President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
“We are honored to recognize these personalities in our society, because they are always ready to support the union’s operations. Again, we are always proud to see Dr. Kenneth Y. Best in his African attire. We can say with certainty that this is happy day for us to honor these personalities, who be believe truly deserve to be honored,” Mr. Kamara, who introduced the awards winners said.
Mr. Kamara also singled out CBL Governor Milton Weeks “who has over the years also been very supportive of the union.
The union continues to help in contributing to revenue collection, a commitment that the union is prepared to maintain.
The Representative of District #17, Hasan Kiazolu, who served as keynote speaker, called on Liberians to Love their own thing and appreciate it. This will help the country in its development and transformation.
Liberia, he lamented, is the only country whose citizens distance themselves from good things. “Not everyone will be a doctor, an accountant or a lawyer. So let learn to love what we have as a country and people, however little it is.”
“When you are a good tailor and speak Mandingo, we say the man is from Guinea and not a Liberian. When you are a good businessman and speak Kru, we say you are from Sierra Leone. When will we appreciate our own thing in Liberia? We need to learn to love this country and appreciate what we have, including our own people,” he said.
There is need for all Liberians to liberate their minds and hearts in order to change Liberia, the Legislator declared, adding, that it is the attractions of talents that will help to build a nation.”
“Again, some of the best brains in Liberia today are tailors. We must appreciate a Kru man, a Fula man, or Mandingo man who is helping to transform this country. Let us stop giving them foreign nationalities,” the lawmaker urged.
He then called on Liberians always to buy “made in Liberia” products, which he said will help to build Liberia and empower the citizens.
Chief Tamba Younda, former Board Chairman/founding member of LNTTGAWU, lauded the organizers for honoring them, especially for their contributions toward the development of the union.
“We will continue to pray for you people. We founded this union, but it is for the good of everyone. We must continue to work together to ensure that the union serves the general good of the country,” Chief Younda stated.
During the program, LNTTGAWU also graduated 30 young men and women who completed nine months training in tailoring and the making of garments and textiles.
Mr. Sylvester Kassa Thomas, Chief of Office Staff in the office of CBL’s Milton Weeks, who proxied for the Governor, said the CBL Governor attaches serious attention to the work of the Taylors’ Union, especially its achievements.
“The Governor is deeply humbled by this honor bestowed on him as one of the recipients of the prestigious 2018 Wear Your Proud Service Award. Indeed, this prestigious award would have easily been given to many more prominent Liberians who must have met the requirements to qualify.”
He said LNTTGAWU has distinguished itself among all civic, public and private sector organizations for placing Liberia first in all its endeavors.
“It has been manifested in its commitment to promote Liberian entrepreneurship, especially in the area of Liberia’s textiles, garments. Your organization has made it its mission to admonish all Liberians to have pride in Liberia-made products,” he said.
Daily Observer Publisher Kenneth Y. Best lauded the organizers for such a wonderful program. He paid special tribute to the many young women and men who professionally displayed the union’s beautiful fashions.
Dr. Best recalled that during the wedding of his wife, Mrs. Mae Gene Best and himself on July 17, 1971, the couple and their entire entourage wore African attire.
“We and all our bridesmaids and groomsmen wore African gowns, made by Liberian and Senegalese tailors, and our garments were highly appreciated by those who attended as well as the public in general.
He called on Liberians to continue to buy made in Liberia products, and wear Liberian.
He told the audience that in 1975, during his professional sojourn in Nairobi, Kenya, he gave away all his Western coats and ties and started wearing strictly African attire. The Kenyans and other internationals in that country always appreciated the Liberian gowns he and his wife wore at church and during special occasions.
Mr. Best promised the leaders of the Tailors’ Union that the Daily Observer would carry a one-page pictorial on the impressive and beautiful fashion show held during the occasion, and urged the union to put on such a display at least twice a year.