Tuesday, August 10, 2010

KEEPING THE LIBERIAN GOVERNMENT HONEST

IS THIS THE FUTURE YOU HAVE FOR OUR CHILDREN? THE LIBERIA BUREAU OF MARITIME AFFAIRS HAVING THE AUTHORITY TO BORROW BEYOND ITS MEANS THROUGHT DEFICIT SPENDING. THE AUTHORITY HAVING REVENUE OF $10 MILLION CAN BORROW $15 MILLION TO MEET ITS EXPENDITURE. THAT’S THE KIND OF EXPENDITURE THAT EXPLAINS INDEBTING FUTURE GENERATIONS OF LIBERIA FOR MANY YEARS TO COME. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! STOP PUTTING LIBERIA FUTURE IN DEBTS THAT OUR CHILDREN AND THEIR CHIDREN MIGHT NOT BE ABLE TO PAY OFF.
AN OPEN LETTER TO THE PRESIDENT OF LIBERIA

Written by Abraham Hoff

Chief Community Organizer of LEAD Liberia

H.E. President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

LEAD Liberia believes that the Maritime Authority Act is a regulatory set-up for indebting our beloved country (Liberia), plundering our natural resources and promoting financial irresponsibility in Liberia—with that being said, we are calling upon the President of Liberia, H.E. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to veto the Maritime Authority Act because it is not in the national interest of our beloved country (Liberia).

According to Frontpageafrica.com, this week Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf is expected to sign a revised version of the Liberian Maritime Authority Act which brought in a storm of criticism and international rebuke within the past 10 days for it sweeping grant of powers, mainly dubious, to an unelected body. LEAD Liberia believes it is absurd to give the Commissioner and Deputy Commissioners of the Authority immunity from prosecution or lawsuits under this Act in the performance and execution of their duties as Commissioner and Deputy Commissioners and in carrying out any other governmental functions proscribed under the Liberian Maritime Laws and Regulations, provided the actions of said officers and employees are not determined to be negligent or criminal in nature. NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW.

This generation has decided to give the status quo a “generation retirement check. We need a government that leads with trust and integrity thereby siding with the Liberian people. The people have had enough of the same old--fake politicians who are doing nothing positive but stealing taxpayer money from government’s coffers, taking bribe, committing fraud and engaging in waste and corrupt activities, while depleting the country natural resources. The people have had enough of the status quo who have not done an effective job of understanding what our natural resources are [whether they are renewable or not]. The people have had enough of the status quo because they lack fresh ideas and the torch must be passed to the next generation. If not us WHO? If not now WENT?

The status quo said all is well in Liberia; however, as we travel across Liberia we know that all isn't well because parents are struggling to fee their children--not talking about sending them to school--the youth like me-who have to struggle and make it against all odds are struggling to make end meats, not talking about gaining high school education and/or higher education. Today, we don’t have to take a survey to know that all is not well across Liberia. In fact, my story today is part of the larger Liberian’s story. My story here today is pretty unlikely. My family is not part of the elite class and the well connected in Liberia.

Through the help of God and hard work in school, I got a double promotion from seventh grade to eighth grade. Unfortunately, I was unable to enroll for that semester because my uncle, Josiah did not have the financial standing to send me to school and there were no scholarships for students who do well in schools. I was required to pay my school fees before returning to school for that semester. Therefore, I did not attend school for that semester. I ended up selling boiled eggs from Rally Town Market to Water Side Market; from Mamba Point to Broad Street just to help my uncle and his wife paid for my primary education. I grew up selling plastic bags from Rally Town Market to Water Side Market just to help my uncle and his wife paid for my tuition in primary school. In addition, I carried bags of coal on my head from Rally Town Market to people houses just to earn money for other fees in school—this shouldn’t be in Liberia. My story today is part of the larger Liberian’s story.

These corrupt politicians said all is well in Liberia. Today, the Liberian people are the ones doing the lifting while their elected officials are standing on the sideline to watch ordinary Liberians build schools and pay teachers out of their own pocket. I am talking about the schools the government supposed to build and the teachers the government supposed to pay. I am talking about the same people who destroyed our beloved country because of greed and personal agenda. I am talking about the status quo who have had majority in both the Senate and the House without implanting a single appropriation bill that benefits the struggling people of Liberia. OH they have forsaken the struggling people that got them elected in the first place. But now election is around the corner and they are back with their same old promises and policies--LIFT Liberia and/or New Beginning. We have decided to give the status quo a “generation retirement check. They must pass the torch to the next generation and if Not Us WHO? If Not Now WENT?

These people are out of touch with reality, because if they were not…they who have understand the many problems ordinary Liberians are facing day by day….They who have understand the situations of the young boys and girls who are struggling by the day to earn a high school diploma and/or end meats….some are even selling boiled eggs and plastic bags on the streets to pay for fees in schools….while others are towering bags of fire coal on their heads and engaging in child labor and other immoral acts to support themselves and their families--the youth like me-who have to struggle and make it through primary and secondary schools against all odds. However, our government officials are seeking immunity from prosecution or lawsuits under the Maritime Authority Act, this shouldn’t be in Liberia.

Today, my fellow Liberians, I am calling upon you to give the status quo a “generation retirement check. Today, my fellow Liberians, I calling upon you to tell the status quo as President, Barack Obama said, “Not this year--Not this time. Today Liberians, let’s us come together and tell our so-call politicians and the status quo ‘Not this election and not in this generation. The choice is clear and the time is now, so help us God.

Thank you and May God bless the Republic of Liberia.

LEAD Organizing For Liberia

Abraham Hoff, Chief Community Organizer

077384990 leadliberia@yahoo.com

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Everyone is a genius

Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. – A Einstein

Drawing the line in Liberia

Crimes sponsored, committed, or masterminded by handful of individuals cannot be blamed upon an entire nationality. In this case, Liberians! The need for post-war justice is a step toward lasting peace, stability and prosperity for Liberia. Liberia needs a war crimes tribunal or some credible legal forum that is capable of dealing with atrocities perpetrated against defenseless men, women and children during the country's brutal war. Without justice, peace shall remain elusive and investment in Liberia will not produce the intended results. - Bernard Gbayee Goah



Men with unhealthy characters should not champion any noble cause

They pretend to advocate the cause of the people when their deeds in the dark mirror nothing else but EVIL!!
When evil and corrupt men try to champion a cause that is so noble … such cause, how noble it may be, becomes meaningless in the eyes of the people - Bernard Gbayee Goah.

If Liberia must move forward ...

If Liberia must move forward in order to claim its place as a civilized nation amongst world community of nations, come 2017 elections, Liberians must critically review the events of the past with honesty and objectivity. They must make a new commitment to seek lasting solutions. The track records of those who are presenting themselves as candidates for the position of "President of the Republic of Liberia" must be well examined. Liberians must be fair to themselves because results from the 2011 elections will determine the future of Liberia’s unborn generations to come - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's greatest problem!

While it is true that an individual may be held responsible for corruption and mismanagement of funds in government, the lack of proper system to work with may as well impede the process of ethical, managerial, and financial accountability - Bernard Gbayee Goah

What do I think should be done?

The situation in Liberia is Compound Complex and cannot be fixed unless the entire system of government is reinvented.
Liberia needs a workable but uncompromising system that will make the country an asylum free from abuse, and other forms of corruption.
Any attempt to institute the system mentioned above in the absence of rule of law is meaningless, and more detrimental to Liberia as a whole - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's Natural Resources
Besides land water and few other resources, most of Liberia’s dependable natural resources are not infinite, they are finite and therefore can be depleted.
Liberia’s gold, diamond, and other natural resources will not always be an available source of revenue generation for its people and its government. The need to invent a system in government that focuses on an alternative income generation method cannot be over emphasized at this point - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia needs a proper system
If Liberians refuse to erect a proper system in place that promotes the minimization of corruption and mismanagement of public funds by government institutions, and individuals, there will come a time when the value of the entire country will be seen as a large valueless land suited on the west coast of Africa with some polluted bodies of waters and nothing else. To have no system in place in any country is to have no respect for rule of law. To have no respect for rule of law is to believe in lawlessness. And where there is lawlessness, there is always corruption - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Solving problems in the absence of war talks

As political instability continues to increase in Africa, it has become abundantly clear that military intervention as a primary remedy to peace is not a durable solution. Such intervention only increases insecurity and massive economic hardship. An existing example which could be a valuable lesson for Liberia is Great Britain, and the US war on terror for the purpose of global security. The use of arms whether in peace keeping, occupation, or invasion as a primary means of solving problem has yield only little results. Military intervention by any country as the only solution to problem solving will result into massive military spending, economic hardship, more fear, and animosity as well as increase insecurity. The alternative is learning how to solve problems in the absence of war talks. The objective of such alternative must be to provide real sustainable human security which cannot be achieved through military arm intervention, or aggression. In order to achieve results that will make the peaceful coexistence of all mankind possible, there must be a common ground for the stories of all sides to be heard. I believe there are always three sides to every story: Their side of the story, Our side of the story, and The truthBernard Gbayee Goah

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