Wednesday, January 9, 2013, marked the birth anniversary of Dr. J. Mills Jones, Executive Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL). Dr. Jones, as the story goes, had decided with his wife, Madam Esther Jones, to dine and wine at the Mamba Point Hotel later on Wednesday.
While sitting in his Warren Street office, according to Dr. Jones, he was persuaded by some officials of CBL go into the institution’s conference room, for different purpose, only to his surprise, he and his wife bumped into his birthday celebration and honoring hall, already prepared by the employees for the occasion.
Pointing fingers as he and his wife walked into the hall amidst slogan by his employees “surprise, surprise,” Dr. Jones remarked, “Hmm…you Central Bank people.”
The employees, accordingly, planned the program to catch their boss unaware, because invited guests including Ecobank Managing Director, Kola Adeleke, as were informed by organizers, entered the program hall without Dr. Jones being aware. Before Dr. Jones’ arrival, the packed program hall was dramatic as Charles Sirleaf, CBL’s Deputy Governor for Operations, moved in and out, making sure there was nothing suspicious at the entrance.
Giving an overview of the occasion, the Director for Administration at the CBL, Madam D. Sheba Brown, who served as MC, said they (employees) had decided to make the occasion special due to the honoree’s good leadership ability he continues to demonstrate.
All departments, the Board of Governors and staff association presented gifts and certificates to Dr. Jones, in honor of his birthday and service. During the presentations, spokespersons of various departments praised the CBL Governor and vowed that his (Dr. Jones) dream of seeing Liberia transformed will live on. According them, Dr. Jones has not only played good leadership roles, he has provided a good working environment by transforming the system. They also termed him as their mentor, because, as they put it, his administration at the CBL has advanced their skills and knowledge in their profession.
According to the certificate presented by Theo Bettie, CBL’s Deputy Governor for Economic Policy, the Bank honored Dr. Jones as “Employee of the Year”.
“You, Governor Jones, you have been declared by the CBL family as the Employee of the Year 2012,” Bettie said. Bettie, however, clarified that Dr. Jones was not honored as CBL Employee, but employee of the Liberian people because Dr. Jones is the Director of Finance.
Meanwhile, the CBL employees pledged their unflinching support to Dr. Jones’ administration and aspiration.
For his part, Dr. Jones praised the employees for recognizing his efforts. The CBL Governor said he was out of words to express because the program took him by surprise when he and his wife had decided to go to the Mamba Point Hotel Wednesday afternoon.
Dr. Jones also challenged all employees and Liberians to make the change. He noted that “we must look around us in Liberia if we must make the change.”
He said there is no way for one to change if he or she does not have the courage and conviction to change.
Also making remarks was Ecobank Managing Director, Kola Adeleke, who commended the employees for the program. –Fredrick P. W. Gaye