Monday, January 3, 2011

'No compromise' as mediators tell Gbagbo to step down

Source:  RFI

A United Nations patrol
on the streets of Abidjan

African Union mediator and Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga arrived Monday in Côte d'Ivoire to repeat demands that definant leader Laurent Gbagbo cede power to rival Alassane Ouattara. After Gbagbo failed to heed a 1 January deadline to transfer power peacefully, military commanders continue to finalise plans for his forceful removal.

Odinga will be joined in Abidjan by three regional presidents, Benin's Boni Yayi, Sierra Leone's Ernest Koroma and Cape Verde's Pedro Pires. They represent the 15-nation Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas).

A member of the delegation has said that "there is no point of negotiation" and that the bloc's position has not changed.

Observers say that that amnesty and exile deals will be discussed, but in his New Year message Gbagbo reiterated his belief that he is the rightfully elected president.

“Since last week’s meeting the tone has softened considerably,” said RFI correspondent Marco Chown Oved, from Abidjan.

Chown said that there are splits among African leaders: Some, such as ECOWAS head and Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan, believe that only diplomacy should be used to resolve the situation, while others, such as Kenya's Odinga, are opposed to power sharing deals that have proven difficult in the past and provide poor precedents for the future of African democracy.

“But between this hesitation and a full military intervention is a lot of ground to cover,” added Oved.

Meanwhile, a United Nations official investigating alleged abuses says that while a campaign of terror by Gbagbo’s supporters has apparently calmed, he has evidence of extra-judicial killings.

Simon Munzu, the head of UN's human rights division, said that his staff had verified claims of murder, with other reports pending verification.

Gbagbo supporters have twice prevented peacekeepers from visiting the site of an alleged mass grave.

The UN is also investigating reports that doors have been marked to indicate the ethnic status of inhabitants, in what some fear could be the prelude to a civil war divided along ethnic lines.

The weekend passed, without the storming of the Golf Hotel, where Ouattara has been staying.

Charles Ble Goude, the Youth Minister, said that he had been asked to “postpone our plan" to attack the hotel.

He added that he wanted to give negotiations more time to succeed, but warned that he would renew his calls to storm the hotel if Côte d'Ivoire is attacked.

The UN said that up to 500 refugees are fleeing to Liberia each day, with the total already nearing 20,000. The majority of asylum seekers are under 18 years of age and supplies are already running low.

Côte d'Ivoire is the world’s largest cocoa grower, accounting for 33 percent of the world’s output and a quarter of all exports for sub-Saharan Africa’s seventh-biggest economy.

News Headline

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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