Saturday, July 16, 2011
Iron Lady and Liberia's Crossroads
The current election season in Liberia is being watched by many people around the world.It is becoming clear that decision about Africa are being decided in Western cities.So are who should be in power in Africa.When a leader good or bad is liked by the West he is given a pass.When he is loathed by the West good or bad he is targeted for removal.The Iron Lady Ellen Sirleaf was never in harms way during her constant drive for the Presidency of Liberia.Now suddenly the West has a leader in Liberia it deems as respectable.Now the question is why is she so respectable?One she is an elderly woman.Spite the image of an Iron Lady she has caved in to every demand the vultures and bloodsuckers of Liberia has asked for.A 70/30 split on oil (in Chevrons favor)revenues with Chevron with most of the operations done outside of Liberia.A tax holiday which the people of Liberia will paying Chevron to rob them of their oil.This is why the Liberian Petroleum Corporation leaders insist that people not depend on oil for atleast 25 years.Just like they say dont depend on Liberia climbing out of poverty until 2030!By that time they will be all gone while Liberians will be in a cycle of hopelessness.The following is an article from Bishop
RSW Weah of Liberia.-----KALAGENESIS
My Dear Fellow Liberians:
I pray this message finds you in great spirit! Our once great Liberia must rise again; and the countless tears of our people must be wiped away. Our dignity as a great people must be redeemed both in Africa and the world; we must be restored back to our rightful place in Africa and among developing nations. Our country must be saved from the very hands of those who brought it into waywardness and political, economic and social paralysis. Yes, in response to some, we are once again at a "crossroads" of important decisions regarding our beloved country, and of that we are fully aware. We know what we want, and though achieving it is the issue and does not come without difficulty; but settling for less than what we deserve is not the remedy for our problem. We are the people facing the real problem, and we know what's best for us not outsiders! I understand that I don't speak for everyone in terms of this current administration, but I'm very certain that I speak for the majority of natives in desperate need of real change in Liberia.
This last state of the union address surely reveals the heart of our president, all in her own words. Was that a "state of the union" or "state of the party" (Unity Party) address? Was she addressing the country or her party? Saying "the Unity Party" throughout her message and "Unity Partisans", and not "my administration", is not a good sign! It is very unhealthy coming from one who claims she's for reconciliation; it is not helpful in light of national unity! It denotes ownership by the Unity Party. Is this president really serious? Is she for real? The mouth can only communicate what the heart has conceived! I thought an administration was to be inclusive of others and not exclusive to a single party? Have we gone back to the days of one party system (TWP) ushered in by Anthony Gardiner? If we did, I was not aware! Was it a message to us that yes indeed the TWP is back in the form of UP and must maintain ownership? Are they planning to hijack the elections by all means?
Liberia is in more trouble than we may realize, and I concur with Dr. Gbaba that there be an Interim Government in order to allow room for the implementation of the TRC recommendations that would never see the light of day under this administration; and perhaps not even under a new administration in the event the names of its key members are also included on the list of those banned from public office for the period outlined in the report. This would also serve as an assurance for a guaranteed "absence of citizens' intimidation and harassment". I also concur with Rev. Cllr. Jeyweh in his proposal regarding the constitution, if Liberia must be a viable country. Though my agreement in this regard is only in part; in that the 1986 Constitution does not need repealing, but some serious amendments are very necessary under Articles 91 & 92. One provision in the Constitution under Article 90, which has to do with "Conflict of Interest", is limited and unclear in light of the penalties of violation. This must be taken seriously and amended in the Constitution as a result of gross violation by government officials without consequence; and this must be enforced in order to avoid further economic sabotage. The Liberian political system needs some restructuring; it needs an overhaul, and this must be done in the constitution if real change must become a reality. I have read the constitution a few times, and I must say it is very limited to be the blueprint for any nation, and certainly not in this 21st century. If Liberia must be a developing nation that can compete in a global economy, this must be done, and must be taken very seriously. Why would Liberians want to "invest their lives" in a country where there is no apparent end to hopelessness in sight? I'm always puzzled as I read sections of the Liberian constitution, and can't help but wonder where we are headed if we continue on this narrow path; and this path must be broadened.
The TRC recommendations are not less harsh than the penalty of imprisonment outlined in Article 76 of the Liberian Constitution; which also needs to be seriously amended (Section b) in light of the new culture of impunity. If the TRC recommendations are not appropriate for this administration, then let the constitution take its effect and let it be invoked by its citizens without fear of retaliation. Now of course this is not going to happen; and in order for Liberia to move forward, the TRC recommendations must be implemented. Liberia cannot continue to have a culture of impunity! War criminals cannot continue to go free and be handsomely rewarded for their heinous crimes against our people, while very sound and well educated Liberians desiring to help move our country forward, who have not shed the blood of a single Liberian, are denied the privilege of serving their country in the best interest of the people. What will encourage our people to go back home? We all long for the day when we shall finally return; but really, what do we go back to? There must be some new changes, and serious changes to warrant our permanent return back home.
One other significant change that must take effect in light of the constitution is the term of the president under Articles 50, 61 & 93. The Constitution also gives birth to dictatorship, in that it gives the president no accountability; and when there is no accountability, you cannot expect one to govern with conscience and transparency in the best interest of the country, especially a country like Liberia. We must go back to the four year term of 1907, taking away two years from the president's current six years. How do we know that this president will not add her one year to the term to make it seven? After all, she wouldn't be the first! The longer they stay in office, the more they tend to claim their right (greed) to ownership. Power is sweet; it's like honey in the mouth of an African leader, and how dare you try to take that sweet honey away? When you try, it spells trouble! Whatever happened to her claim or promise that she would not seek a second term? It was false - all lies to begin with. What do you expect from the woman who did everything she could to be president at all cost regardless of the number of innocent Liberian lives that would be lost and the destruction of our country in the process? Her desperate quest for the presidency was all that mattered to her and nothing else; and it was selfishness to its highest degree! After all she had done, the Liberian people gave her the benefit of doubt by voting for her (though with a question mark in my opinion), and she won their confidence by stating that she would not seek a second term, and here we are again.
In light of the TRC recommendations, what else do you expect from the one who is one of the most guilty, if not the most guilty of all in light of the 14-year senseless war? Do you expect the TRC recommendation to be implemented under this current administration when the leader herself is included on that list of persons banned from office? Do you expect this to happen when other parties included on the list are currently serving in all three branches of the government? Don't be deceived! The president was all for it when she thought she had "clearance", up until her name was included among the others. I can only assume (rightfully) that she perhaps thought that the commission was going to keep her out because "she's the president". The bottom line is when you point your finger, there are three pointing back at you and one pointing up; there are three witnesses who are the recipients of your fingers when you point, namely the person you are pointing at, yourself and God. This president is only reaping what she has sown; it's noting more than what she's done to others in the name of "I can do it better", now our country is destroyed. She has no intention of implementing the TRC recommendations period.
In light of the level of corruption in our country, that continues to keep it handicapped, what do you expect from the very one who is primarily responsible for our destruction? I paraphrase: "destroy it and we will rebuild it", and I'm sure you can recall that; or perhaps I should quote exactly her very reckless and selfish remark on BBC: "burn down Monrovia and we will rebuild it"! Where is the development she promised? We repeatedly voted for these ferocious wolves who have wreaked havoc on our country, leaving it in utter despair, desperately crying and shedding blood for tears. The hopelessness we face today is of our own making! Do we have to arrive at the point of almost total annihilation before we take a stand for what is good and right in light of the survival and development of our country?
I'm very much appalled by the actions of people who continue to support those who have killed our people without conscience to accomplish their own selfish agendas! And those who support them do so in order to accomplish their own selfish agendas as well. Every man is entitled to his position and must follow his heart, but let it also be in the best interest of the county. I know there are Africans who endeavor to lead out of pure motive for the betterment of their countries and their people; or at least those who would not allow their selfish agendas clouding their judgment and ability to lead properly. We have examples of men like Kwame Nkrumah (though he had his political short comings), Jerry Rawlings, Julius Nyerere, and Nelson Mandela. I know it's possible in Liberia, but the constitution issue must be deeply considered. Against the popular notion, I'm certain that there are Liberians who truly love and care for the people they desire or aspire to lead; and would truly like to improve the quality of life of our people from the present state of degradation, desperation and hopelessness to that of redemption, glorification and hopefulness!
How can you have a country with a good political, economic, social and educational balance when its people are held captive by fear and ignorance? Who created the ignorance of our people to begin with? Those who wrote the original constitution and established two classes of citizens, and enjoyed the wealth of the nation while its natives were sentenced to the bondage of ignorance and poverty! Now we are at a crossroads and must make a very wise decision in light of the development of our country. We cannot survive on lies and deception; and cannot depend on the very same people who deliberately and arrogantly destroyed our country to accomplish their own personal and selfish agendas. We must say enough is enough!
How can you ever have a reasonably decent government when vicious people, cold blooded murderers, thieves, thugs and uneducated people are running such government? How can you have a viable country when those who aspire to lead only embark on such endeavor solely to enrich themselves, their families and friends? Only God Almighty can save a country like Liberia and deliver us from our chronic disease - the mentality of regression. Every Liberian has an obligation to the land in this election, and must make their voice heard in the benefit of the people; they must do so for the betterment of our country and nothing less. Anything other than that, we will have ourselves to blame again. This ever lingering imperial dynasty must come to an end and not continue to be a shadow over our people! Vote your heart; vote your conscience, for the benefit of the country, and not from a selfish motive!
It is only sad that the Liberians in the diaspora cannot vote; and this is why all the more the system must be changed to improve the way we think and act, and have a better political system. However, I understand that everyone cannot go to Liberia for one reason or another, that's just impossible; but those who cannot go to Liberia at the time of the elections, yet have the power to influence votes for the candidate of their choice. This you can do by establishing a mini party headquarter with your family members and friends, who will then spread the message to others in your absence. You can do this knowing that our people are easily influenced by small change (though for their own benefit in this regard and not in the normal deceptive manner employed by some), and that is what's happening on the ground. If this was to be done by everyone, considering the fact that majority rules with one voice, there will be a much greater voice coming from the diaspora. Make your voice heard!
In light of dual citizenship, many of us would like to return and give back to our beloved country. We have and continue to develop ourselves, and would like to contribute and make a real difference in our country, but how are we encouraged to go back home in the midst of uncertainties? Why is our youthfulness wasting away in the diaspora when we could be back home? Why are outsiders enjoying Liberia while contributing to factors that are elements of poverty, when her people are in the diaspora for lack of economic assurance? I'm 100% for dual citizenship with one sanction, that it is limited to blacks only, regardless of place of birth and no other. There are full Liberians who are not Liberian citizens; half Liberians who are not Liberian citizens; as well as non-Liberian spouses of Liberians, who may love Liberia, but may never take the country very seriously in the absence of dual citizenship; they need assurance of equal opportunity and to be recognized as being fully Liberian. This would help bring about a viable economy once again. Let Liberians and blacks from everywhere come and bring development and constructive ideas, and help pour into our very crippled and devastated economy, and bring social change that will improve the quality of life of our people.
All Liberians have to do their share in getting Liberia to be a viable country once again. Get involved and be a part of the process of development; help bring real change to our country and not merely sit around, talk, write, argue and somehow try to demean each other. The beautiful Palmbale land in Little Cola, Grand Bassa County is owned by my family; it was my grandfather's and the deed is held by my mother who is the steward. I certainly have great plans for that land in light of development in Liberia, and a county in which I grew up as a little boy before taking residence in Monrovia. Sweet Liberia will certainly be sweet again if every Liberian who can, will only do their share. I commend all who are taking on initiatives for our country, and I salute you! Don't exploit your own people as some have done, they have suffered enough; let their pain be your motivation, and the resulting blessing for you will be fulfilling and rewarding!
The late great Liberia must rise again; and her cry for redemption must be heard and not ignored for personal enrichment. Our once great Liberia must shine again; and the countless tears of our people must be wiped away. Hope must be restored to our people; and the level of their self-esteem must be elevated! Help change the system; vote or send money to influence votes in a positive direction; make your voice heard! I conclude with the very popular phrase of the early 1980s: "In the cause of the people, the struggle continues!"
Sincerely and respectfully,
Bishop R.S.W. Chea, Th.D.
President & C.E.O.
A Concerned Liberian for Progress & Real Change