President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has issued a proclamation declaring March 12, 2014, as National Decoration Day. It is to be observed as a national holiday throughout Liberia.
According to a Foreign Ministry press release, the Proclamation is in consonance with an Act passed on October 24, 1916, by the National Legislature declaring the second Wednesday in March of each year to be known as Decoration Day; to be observed throughout Liberia as National Holiday.
The release notes that the observance is in recognition of the nation’s past heroes and heroines who have lived and died in the interest of their country.
The Proclamation stated: “It is befitting that a day be set aside to celebrate the memory of those blessed dead who have lived and died in the interest of their country, thereby keeping alive their deeds and invaluable contributions made to society and the state for the onward march to progress.”
The proclamation further ordered that the National Ensign be flown at half –mast from all public buildings, military camps, and private residences from 12:01 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Introduced in the Republic of Liberia in 1916, Decoration Day was a national festival that enjoyed popular support among the people inhabiting the interior of Liberia, also known as the “country people,” who are never adverse to honoring their ancestors and to spending a day communing with their spirits.