Monday, January 17, 2011

Liberia: 'NEC Must Extend VR Exercise'

A representative aspirant of District #11 Montserrado County Henry D. Johnson is calling on the National Elections Commission to extend the ongoing voters’ registration exercise two additional weeks in order to ensure free, fair, credible and democratic elections.

Mr. Johnson made the comment over the weekend when he declared his intention to contest the District#11 representative seat in Montserrado County.

In his declaration speech, the youthful District# representative candidate outlined a number of issues he thinks NEC should handle with urgency if the 2011 general and presidential elections are to be truly credible.

During Mr. Johnson’s observation, he pointed out that there are currently insufficient voter registration centers in the South Eastern region of the country and as such, he noted, he is calling on the country’s electoral body to create more registration centers in order to afford every citizen the opportunity to exercise their rights. Another concern the young aspirant in his argument raised is the issue about people walking far distances in order to register. He claimed, for example, that people in Grand Kru and other neighboring Counties often walked more than five hours distance, a factor he alleged is causing many people to abandon the voters’ registration exercise in the South-Eastern region of the country.

“Members of the press, my people of District #11, community leaders, elders, ladies and gentlemen. There are certain grave issues that I think the NEC should immediately address if the 2011 elections are to be free, fair and credible. As I speak to you now, the reports we are getting from the South-Eastern part of the country speak of low voters’ turnout. There are currently insufficient voter registration centers in places like Grand Kru, Rivercess, Sinoe and other areas and that people will have to walk far distances before reaching to registration sites which is not healthy for our democracy. I therefore suggest that the NEC create additional registration centers for those people in the South- East of the country. Any attempt to overlook these points means that you are disenfranchising and tempering with the rights of our citizens. We need additional two weeks to complete the voter registration process comprehensively. We want for NEC to consider these issues we are raising as very cardinal to electoral process and immediately address them,” he opined.

Quizzed as to why he decided to contest the representative seat in his District, Mr. Johnson replied with a sobering voice and reflected activities of past officials who he squarely ended his anger on for not doing much in terms of development of their community.

Though he did not call any name of the quote-unquote –past officials who he alleged have failed the people of District#11,he however claimed that youths have been marginalized in the past by the older folks, and that it was now time for the youthful population of the district to spearhead leadership of their constituency to illustrate that they too are capable of leading the people. Mr. Johnson then vowed to undertake a major drainage cleaning up campaign at the end of the year, noting that the district is a slump community and therefore he cannot afford to see his people language in such destitute condition.

Mr. Johnson also accused national government of doing little or nothing to develop his community. He said the UP Led administration since taking power in 2006, cannot point to a single development project in the district.

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Inside Liberia with Bernard Gbayee Goah

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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