On July 26th at the Liberian embassy’s annual Independence Day reception for the Diplomatic Corps, Mokoli Productions, Inc. staged Happy 160th Birthday: Showcasing Liberia's Resources through Fashion. The display, featuring the Miss Africa International beauty queens and models, is part of a line promoting Africa's resources as many African countries approach their 50th independence anniversaries. The line includes diamond, copper, iron ore, rubber, rice, titanium, sugar cane, coffee and other resources found on the continent.
Ellen Dunbar, the Liberian designer who also serves as executive producer of the Miss Africa International pageant, boasted of Liberia’s resources, stressing the significance of Liberia’s rubber during World War II. She also called Liberia an ecotourism bonanza for maintaining more than 80% of its tropical rainforest, the highest in West Africa. Dunbar expressed hopes of Liberia’s resources making the country a major player in the global market after years of turmoil and mismanagement.
Guests included ambassadors of the Diplomatic Corps, officials from the U.S. State Department, White House and the Pentagon. Robert Johnson, founder of BET, was the guest of honor. Co-sponsors included Liberian Ambassador Charles Minor, Nigerian Senator Ike Ekweremadu, Dr. Khotso Mokhele of Mittal Steel South Africa, L.I.D.F., American Business Women's Association, A.K.A. Sorority, Inc. and All Africa Global Media.