Even days after the celebration of its 80th Birthday Anniversary, Dr. Togba-Nah Tipoteh, continues to be pleasantly bombarded with pleasantries and eulogies not must from ordinary Liberians but also from high profile national and international personalities. Dr. Tipoteh has been in the advocacy for social justice and political pluralism in Liberia for over fifty years and become a model for so many people, which is why it is not a surprise that Liberians clamor to wish him fond greetings in his celebration of his birthday. Coming during the weekend was also a short but catchy salutations from Liberia and Africa’s first democratically elected president. Former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf joined many others extending her “heartfelt” birthday greetings to Dr. Tipoteh, as The Analyst reports.
The latest high topnotch, eminent citizen to join this year’s birth celebration of Dr. Togba-Nah Tipoteh is former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
Dr. Tipoteh’s 80th birth anniversary this year is underpinned a high media stunt particularly powered by eulogies and tributes from predominantly high profile citizens who rarely take on the local media.
The lineup of well-wishers included a horde of progressives, the stock of citizens who agitated against and brought to an end a one-party hegemony. Enthralling tributes have come from former Interim President Amos Sawyer, Senator Conmany Wesseh, Professor D. Tuan-Wleh Mayson, President of the Liberia National Bar Association Tiawan Gongloe, amongst others.
Now, the former two-term President of Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, has followed suit with a short and moving eulogy.
He wrote on her social media page: “I joined thousands of others to celebrate the 80th Birthday of Dr. Togba Nah Tìpòteh—the Liberian icon.”
Madam Sirleaf said further of Dr. Tipoteh: “He is one of a kind—intelligent, steadfast in friendship, without fear or favor in demanding rights, justice and honor in public service.”
Earlier former head of state, a longtime buddy of Dr. Tipoteh, Dr. Amos Cladius Sawyer, reflected deeply on the works and life of the celebrant.
Dr. Sawyer wrote: “Professor Dr. Togba Nah Tipoteh is a renowned public intellectual and economist who has specialized in addressing challenges of poverty, particularly in Africa. His over 50 years of work in this area demonstrates his abiding commitment to enhancing understandings of the condition of poor people and taking action in assisting them become drivers of their own development processes.
He is among the finest examples of public intellectuals who have the extraordinary capacity to blend academic and action research with praxis for the improvement of the human condition. As an academic, he has over the years demonstrated an exceptional ability to analyze complex issues, making them understandable to people with minimal levels of formal education while, at the same time, enriching academic theories with practical on-the-ground experience. As an academic person, I have benefited immensely from his strength in this and many other respects.”
Dr. Sawayer said, “as a development practitioner, Dr. Tipoteh has been able to successfully link academic training to development practice and, unlike many academics, he does not seek refuge in the Ivory Tower. He initiates and joins many debates about the political economy of our country, Liberia, and our continent, Africa, on issues ranging from the improvement of small-holder agriculture, to the empowerment of industrial workers, to improvement of financial institutions, to the overall strengthening of our system of governance.”
“His tenacious insistence on truth-telling and the search for truth has often put him at loggerheads with the powers that be in Liberia. For example, his founding role and leadership of SUSUKUU, (a local self-help and self-governing development initiative) was much appreciated and enthusiastically embraced by local communities not only in Grand Gedeh and the southeast, but throughout Liberia. However, the heavy hand of an authoritarian government crushed the project but could not uproot the idea as it spread throughout Liberia and became the most viable model of community development.”