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Wednesday, June 12, 2024

How Poor Planning & Chaotic Protocol Keepimg Contributed to President Suffering Heat exhaustion

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By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor

Event planning and protocol management again sadly popup as a significant weak link in public service organization. Nearly every national event bears the identity of poor planning.

The Jan. 22, 2024 Inaugural ceremony was a sheer disaster and national embarrassment beyond compared.

Protocol officers from the Ministries of State for Presidential Affairs and Foreign Affairs and other related team members could not handle the event, hence the unfolding chaos.

Seating was not properly arranged, the program did not start in time. Up and until 10 a.m.  program staff were still setting up.

The sound or public address system was a complete mess. No water was available on the grounds of the Capitol coinciding  with the extreme heat that graced the occasion leaving some people including President Boakai exhausted.

Embarrassment was so pronounced when the Chinese delegation were seen toting their chairs in order to be seated for the program, International guests from African countries and other region were also seen carrying their chairs to a seat.

There was no arrangement for government officials to be seated. Senior citizens especially those who had served government in key and influential positions were seen loitering on the grounds of the Capitol Building because there was no seat reserved for them.

Chairs were not orderly arranged nor labeled in accordance with protocol, meaning anybody can sit anywhere.

The situation which increasingly disrupted the ceremony and brought the occasion to a momentary standstill saw the head of the transitional Inaugural team for President Boakai Madam Miatta Fanhbulleh  making intervention with no success but more distractions and disruption.

First move. She marched to the press gallery and demanded that journalists should walk out for the Little White Chapel choir to occupy the space. The press corps disagreed because it would hindered reporting.

The Executive Protection Service also rejected call to remove the journalists because the space has been agreed and designated for the media.

“We are appealing to all Liberians to kindly leave their respective seats for international guests,” she said pleaded.

When her call yielded no result, the veteran singer flare with anger and became repulsive asking outgoing junior cabinet officials out. “All deputy and assistant ministers should vacate their seat immediately for international guests to have a seat,” she decreed.

Again with no luck, she reverted to politeness, making fresh appeals in Liberian English. As the saying goes in Liberian social media ecosystem: she tried to makeup things. You could see the love in her eyes but she did make it.

The Standard Bearer of the Economic Freedom Fighters of South Africa could not attend the ceremony because there was a lack of arrangement for him and the team despite him jetting in the country Sunday afternoon from South Africa.

The Public Announcer (PA) system displayed the highest poor connection that the audience could not hear the administering of oaths to both President Boakai and Vice President Jeremiah Koung as the crowd shouted in vain crying to hear their president and vice president responding to the oath of office.

During the morning hours, while guests both national, regional and international were arriving, protocols and security officers were busy cleaning the stage intended for the incoming and outgoing presidents and international guests.

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