By Julius T. Jaesen, II firstname.lastname@example.org
We are so deeply saddened by the written exchange of jibes between former President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and incumbent President George Manneh Weah. Liberians would rather throw interest in any elevated policy conversation that digs out solutions to the country’s longstanding quagmires from the erstwhile President and the incumbent President. These sort of low level and unproductive exchanges between the erstwhile and current president are not healthy for the forward advance of Liberia.
Any Liberian who genuinely loves Liberia would be concerned about what is happening to our country and not only that but also the circumstances that led us to where we are now as a country. It is a sad development that the former President who as per accurate historical evidence, was seen supporting Weah against the advice of her own National Security Advisor is now sadly challenging him in the public simply because his popularity is declining fast and can only pass for comedy value.
We believe the way to proceed for a better Liberia is for the former President to acknowledge that the successor she supported is now carrying the country down the rabbit hole. I am not a theist, but even in the Bible, we are all told that repentance comes with confession. Why is Ellen not owning up to her mistake but rather acting like she gets solutions to our problems? For me, this is arrogance, and it is offensive! You cannot honestly say you have repented from your sin while being scared to confess said sin. How will the reverend prayer be accepted by God on your behalf when you are hiding your nasty dealings behind your back? Hence, an honest admission is needed for genuine forgiveness. Yes, madam President true repentance comes with genuine confession. So, if you want the Liberian people to treat you continually as a valid voice, you must confess your sin against the state!
We can say without fear and uncertainty that this public spat between the two will not help the country at all. Liberia is now in a hole. Professor Patrick Loch Otieno Lumumba said it more eloquently than I do, “You will never succeed until your successor succeed”.
Out of Ellen’s naked quest for power, she told the nation that she was fighting bad governance; she financed and brought in Charles Taylor that destroyed our country for fifteen years. Today, children in Liberia cannot compete with their counterparts in the sub-region. It is important to note Madam President that it was under your watch! You claimed to have supported Taylor and his likes with ten thousand and maybe more than that amount you gave but at the end, it only produced a generation of illiterate people. Afterwards, you were given the opportunity to clean the mess you helped Charles Taylor to create in Liberia, but that opportunity was squandered.
After you took power for twelve years, there was an expectation that you would have left power with Joe Boakai who is a little more level headed as per his experience in government. But again, following in the step of former President Tolbert, even though you have criticised him for nepotism, you decided to promote nepotism and cronyism in your government by promoting the likes of James Kollie, Amara M. Konneh, Eugene Nagbe, George Warner, Axel Addy all of whom were close associates of your beloved son, Robert Sirleaf. These fellows with a sadistic appetite for wealth misled you into supporting Weah against the national interest. Now, you realised that Weah is not listening to you and your henchmen, as well as putting the country in a deeper hole that may require another 24 years for recovery, you are manoeuvring once more. When will you stop treating our people as idiots? Why should our people continue to listen to you when you are not promoting the national interest? Picking a footballer who could not debate a single issue in the Senate over a veteran statesman of Boakai’s calibre does not speak to your respect for a national agenda – it only confirms your desire to pursue personal agenda. What should our people continue to listen to you as an authentic voice when the person through which you see Liberia is not a bigger one but a narrow prism for your personal needs? Your support to Weah was never for the bigger agenda because if it were for the bigger agenda, you would have supported a progressive candidate in the election.
The horrible governance mess our country is now in was created by you and your handlers, Madam President. This is the problem you have created for our country! So, instead of being arrogant, you and your handlers must now admit that you have committed a crime against the state by supporting a complete clown. You supported a man with no experience in government – one who was a senator two years leading the presidential election in 2017 but with zero performance record in the Senate. He didn’t debate anything genuine on the Senate floor all the two years he served as Senator for Montserrado but yet, you and your handlers supported him against progressive candidates. So, what qualified you to have supported Weah if not your personal agenda either to protect you and your children and suppress the nation?
Truth be honestly told, if not your selfish agenda, you would have supported progressive candidates in the election. But see where our country is today? In terms of education, we are the least in the sub-African region. Our children are still sitting WAEC when their counterparts are sitting a competitive exam. It is a shame after twelve years under you; Liberian children cannot go and sit competitive exams but sitting WAEC which is of a lower standard.
Madam President, instead of engaging in a public spat with this lackey, we need a team to be built. We need you Madam President if you want to repent of your sin; we need you to support a coherent team politically to undo Weah and the mess you created and not to engage in a public spat that takes the country nowhere.
If you say Weah is living in opulence because of Christmas tree, but in less than one year, this man built fourteen houses and we didn’t hear you talk a word, either at such time, you were friends and the puppet was dancing to your tone. In honest, when Weah took over, his first agenda was to build fourteen houses for himself. So, where were you that you didn’t talk about that but only Christmas light you can see? Is that only what you see? Are you authentic or are we playing to the gallery? This is blatant hypocrisy!
All your children and grandchildren are in America going to Ivy League schools but Liberian children for fourteen years were deprived of education by Taylor you supported with ten thousand. They were given guns instead of books and pen. After all those years, you came and became president. But even in your twelve years, you and George Warner messed up our educational system than where it used to be pre-war Liberia.
During your reign, you were obsessed with the numbers, the quantitative aspect and obviously not the quality in terms of education. Now, we can see that there is a major gap between the quality of education and its application to real-life situations. Inventions and research outcomes, which should form the basis of innovations and creativity for industries in Liberia, have not been sufficiently linked. The relevance of the fields of study, the curricula, and the effectiveness of pedagogy for the development needs of Liberia and the general quality of programs and graduates remain a big challenge after twelve years of your stewardship.
It is disheartening to note that in most cases, the value attached to education in Liberia has been reduced to obtaining the paper qualification without any due regard or care about the content. Under your presidency, the government, both parents and school managers and owners had not only missed the boat but in most cases, they subverted the boat of education by drilling holes in it. And sadly disgusting, the result of that has been the achievement of pseudo-education by so-called educated people who in reality cannot contribute to solving personal, let alone societal challenges.
However, we must admit to ourselves and our good consciences in other for prosperity to judge us well, that in terms of overall governance, you did a little bid well than the mess we are enduring under your Trojan House, George Weah. But after your twelve years, instead of supporting someone who will improve upon what you have done, you manipulated and gerrymandered the election and gave the presidency to Weah.
Weah is from the football field who is accustomed to opulence. Even though some of us are not Jewish prophets, we warned you against Weah and predicted that this man was a potential catastrophe but you deafened your ears to our advice. It is a matter of public record, and we are aware that you placed money in a white pickup and gave it to Prince Johnson to endorse Weah against progressive and well-intentioned candidates. We even saw Prince Johnson, Weah along with your son Robert Sirleaf in Nigeria attending a Church service in T.B. Joshua’s House of Synagogue. We told you to decline your support for this man and you listened to us not. Now you have created this Frankenstein then you running to social media to complain. Madam President, you must now own responsibility for your decision to manipulate the election and give the presidency to Weah instead of engaging in a frivolous social media exchange that will not take our country anywhere.
To get out of the hole Liberia is currently being plunged into, Liberians will need to stop listening to the people who dragged our country in the hole. They will need to stand up as they did in the mid-term senatorial elections on their own accord and not listen to the people who dragged them into this problem. Liberians must be told that Ellen and her handlers who dragged our country in this mess always have a hidden agenda that is not beneficial to our country. Their agenda has not always been about the advance of the country but rather about their private and selfish interests.
My fellow Liberians, you are the ones who are feeling the pinch of what Weah is in imposing on us, not Ellen and her handlers, nor the big shots in the opposition CPP. You are the ones still fetching water from wells and taking a bath outside. You are the ones that can’t eat a full square meal daily not Ellen and her grandchildren. You are the ones whose children have been kicked out of schools because you are unable to pay their fees. To our mothers, it is you who cannot do business in Liberia any longer due to the imposition of an unjust tax system that leaves you miserable and vulnerable. You will need to come together whether under a coalition or merger to democratically unseat Weah. You will need not to give credence to all these people who put you in the hole you are in today. Don’t look up to any messiah! They are the ones who put your lives behind and in a mess.
Please be aware my fellow countrymen that Ellen and her handlers, in an attempt to come back to power, have planted their ventriloquist puppets in the opposition especially the CPP, to start hailing her and peddling her frivolous and unproductive exchange with George Weah. It is a sad irony that some of them are trying to defend her without acknowledging the deep mess she put the country and your lives in.
Some of those elements who benefited from the spoils of her regime and were sent to some of the best schools in the world at the expense of your taxes and natural resources have been recruited under the cover of darkness to propagate her hidden agenda. She is now trying to infiltrate the CPP to once again impose a leader on you to serve her narrow interest.
Some of them who partly didn’t benefit from her regime as they were opposed to her misrule of the country, but their appetite for money and luxury, they have now entered into unholy relationship and romance with Ellen to further destroy the country. They are holding live Facebook podcasts saying once it’s about removing George Weah, they will stand with the Jezebel Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf. If they say that to you, ask them: Ellen plotted the assassinations of Tolbert and Doe where did it lead Liberia into? It only frustrated the country, your lives and produced a generation of illiterate people.
She plotted the removal of the same Charles Taylor she sent to wage war on you, and after that, where are we today? Liberia is still the poorest and unproductive country in the world today. Liberian children are most likely to have a shorter lifespan than their parents.
So, ask those who are volunteering to work with Ellen to remove Weah maybe undemocratically, what next after they succeed? What is inside for you and Liberia? Ask them! I carefully and knowing used the word “undemocratically” remove George Weah because it is a matter of accurate historical evidence that Ellen is noted for plotting the assassination and removal of a sitting president. She did with Tolbert, Doe and Taylor. So, ask them before you make them your messiahs!
Whilst it is true that we are not happy with the way Weah is rubbishing the country, but we are not happy with the suggestions some of these people are making. Their suggestions are not authentic. From the time Weah got elected, he started building condominiums but Madam President didn’t see all that but only Christmas tree she sees.
When the man took power, apart from building palaces, he started undermining the rule of law and influencing the Supreme Court to remove a sitting Justice but madam didn’t say anything. When Justice Ja’neh was illegally removed you didn’t hear it, madam? What was your position then? Weah undermined the rule of law in the country, you didn’t see it but only Christmas tree you see? But again, these are the people we have. They always have a hidden agenda. Let Ellen tell us what her position on all these things was! If it doesn’t serve their purpose, they will start shouting. If it serves their purpose, they don’t care about the Liberian people.
Your son endorsed this man drinking expensive liquor when thousands of Liberians are going to bed in hunger but for you, that is not opulence, right? Only Christmas tree is opulent for you, right?
Let repeat again, for Liberia to move forward, Liberians will have to stop listening to the people who dragged us into today’s mess. You are the ones feeling the pain yourself and you will have to stand as you did in the just ended senatorial elections other than listening to or be swayed by people who have hidden agenda. Their hidden agenda didn’t serve Liberia in the 90s and it didn’t serve Liberia after the 2017 elections.
The rule of law was being publicly abused, yet we didn’t see any tweet from the madam. But when her son was grabbed and jailed, she came out and said her son was wrongly jailed. Do you see the moral hypocrisy? The man you carried to break ground within Bong County is the man who puts the country now into this terrible mess.
You stabbed your Vice President in the back who served you for twelve unbroken years without any noise and with absolute loyalty, but you were breaking ground for a nonentity to destroy our country. Ellen must stop diluting the national discourse and bring the facts to the public and admit to what she did in 2017!
She imposed Charles Taylor on the people, they destroyed our country. Children couldn’t go to school. And up to now, Liberia is lagging behind in the whole sub-region. A few years ago, you created a moppet and imposed him on us than you are running on tweeter complaining. What are you complaining about, madam? Keep your mouth quiet and sit down, Madam President! What has your influence with all the friends you bragged about having outside done for our country other than to destroy NOCAL and frustrate the hope of the people? What we need now is an authentic voice; not someone who will teleguide the Liberian people and impose people on them.
To pretend that Weah is living in opulence and it is something that you didn’t see coming is offensive, madam. You know this fully well that Leopard can’t leave its spot behind. As a Harvard trained, how can you didn’t know that this man would have lived in opulence when the man is a footballer? You already know that this man like womanizing and is one that is always seen under the stupor of alcohol, especially expensive liquor. How can you didn’t know, madam? How can you not know? This is sheer and blatant hypocrisy at its peak! Your tweet is offensive, madam! So, take your seat in the back, keep your mouth quiet and sit down!
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