A ten-man University of Liberia delegation headed by its president, Rev. Prof. Dr. Julius J. S. Nelson, Jr. has paid a courtesy visit to the home of ailing Liberian historian and author, Prof. Dr. Joseph Saye Guannu in Saniquelle, Nimba County to sympathize with him.
Dr. Nelson presented varieties of assorted food and non-food items to Dr. Guannu as the university’s way of showing care for him.
Dr. Guannu is one of Liberia’s renowned historians and author of many books including the famous ‘Liberian History up to 1847” that is widely taught in many secondary schools in Liberia.
He also lectured as adjunct faculty at the UL Graduate School of International Relations for many years prior to his illness.
Dr. Nelson, in a brief remark, said the UL has planned to recognize and honor Dr. Guannu at its Founder’s Day celebration on February 15 and 16 in Monrovia for the services he rendered to UL and the nation through teaching.
According to Dr. Nelson, the UL Founder’s Day is a part of activities marking Liberia Bicentennial marking 200 years of the return of diaspora Liberians to a place of their birth called Liberia.
“It was agreed by the UL Administration that if the university will celebrate its Founder’s Day, we must pay homage to an outstanding scholar and historian like Dr. Guannu whose books are being utilized in most schools across the country”.
Dr. Nelson expressed the importance of traveling from Monrovia to visit Dr. Guannu and his family in-person as the university’s way of appreciating him for all that he offered while serving as full professor at the Cuttington University where he graduated.
“We thought that since it was agreed to honor him it was good to travel to Sanniquellie to see him and his children before the UL Founder’s Day and share with them what we intend to do because we consider him as one of our fathers.”
According to Dr. Nelson, Prof. Guannu has also been nominated to the Bicentennial Steering Committee to be honored by the Government of Liberia as part of the Bicentennial celebration.
“We even informed the Bicentennial Steering Committee that during the celebration throughout the year it is very important that the Government of Liberia honors him since it is already considering individuals who they plan to honor for outstanding service.”
Dr. Nelson further noted that celebrating the UL Founder’s Day will mean a lot if someone like Dr. Guannu who has given so much to his country through teaching and writing is recognized and honored while he is still breathing the air of life.
“We cannot talk about the history of Liberia and celebrate Founder’s Day if you cannot remember the contribution of Prof. Dr. Joseph Saye Guannu.”
In response, Randolph Togba, a nephew to Dr. Guannu lauded the gesture from Dr. Nelson and the UL family.
“His children are doing their best, but they are not in Liberia currently. However, we are here to look after him”, Mr. Togba stated.
The delegation included representatives from the UL President office, Vice President for Administration, UL Graduate Studies, and UL Relations.
Dr. Nelson and his delegation were accompanied by the President of Nimba County Community College, NCCC, Dr. Josse Morgou, who also paid homage to Dr. Guannu.