Liberia: Preventing the Preventable

Homes in New Kru Town

This Commentary, Preventing the Preventable, is a follow-up to my most recent Commentary called The State of the People 2022. This Commentary is most important because, in the Spirit of Democracy, it carries out the main Call of the People of Liberia. And that Call is: We Want Peace!!! No More War!!! 

Learning from the experience of the Civil War in Liberia that took the lives of 300,000 people, ten per cent of the population of Liberia at that time, damaged billions of dollars worth of infrastructure and left the Liberian economy unrecovered to its pre-war level, the People of Liberia now know that non-violence is the way forward for the better and now call out clearly: We Want Peace!!! No More War!!! We must end and prevent longstanding and widespread poverty because it has become the pretext for violence, including coup d'etat and civil war.

The preventable stampede in Kloh Day-day Kpor of January 19, 2022 tells us clearly that what is preventable continues like "business as usual". Seventy years ago, some children, including me, used to go to the beach at Kloh Daka Kpor, where we lived, to swim, play football, peepee and pupu on the beach. Presently, children are doing the same thing on the beach at Kloh Day-day Kpor. I am not apologizing for using the two "p" words because I am interested in communicating well with most of the people, who do not understand the meaning of urination and defecation. This is why our Elders say in Kraowihn, wrongly called Kru, that “Nyihnpor-tay geepo chehdehdeh keh ee say torh blay”, meaning: some people know book but they do not have sense.

The preventable problems are many, including longstanding and widespread poverty, disrespect, western education, garbage, overcrowding of vehicles and public places, the rule of outlaw, stealing known as corruption, placing carpenter to do the engineer's work or lack of a merit system and the UNFAIR electoral system. How can these problems be prevented? Let us start with what is considered by the powers that be as the most important resource. National leaders, especially religious and political leaders consider jafing (money in the Vehee language, wrongly called Vai) to be the most important resource. This is wrong because when a money-driven/greedy person is given a billion dollars and a Lover of Liberia is given a thousand dollars, the greedy person will use the money on himself or herself and this leads to corruption that remains longstanding and widespread. But the Lover of Liberia will use the money to help others to help themselves and this help can move Liberia from poverty generation to poverty alleviation. It is this greed that continues to drive the powers that be to operate the dominant system of producing raw materials for export rather than prioritizing Value Addition that results in boosting employment and promoting poverty alleviation.

The Liberia National Bar Association (LNBA) certifies legally all lawyers but the Inter-Religious Council of Liberia (IRCL) does not certify most of the persons who occupy the public space as carriers of the word of Our Creator. The Liberia Medical and Dental Association (LMDA) has declared that a person who works in a government hospital as a medical doctor is not a medical doctor but this person continues to work in a government hospital as well as in a private hospital as an orthopedic (bone) surgeon, operating on people and putting their lives at  very high risk. Worst of all is the existence of the National Elections Commission (NEC) of Liberia that operates in violation of the Constitution of Liberia.

In an effort directed at transforming the electoral system from UNFAIR to FAIR in order for persons who have good records, helping others to help themselves, to be elected to take actions through the Rule of Law to transform the electoral system from UNFAIR to FAIR, I went to the Supreme Court of Liberia in the Tipoteh versus Korkoya Case. Mr. Korkoya is a citizen of the United States of America (USA) and his serving as a NEC Commissioner, not forgetting his Chairpersonship of NEC, is in violation of the Constitution of Liberia. Not a single national leader, religious, political, business or government leader has given support to the Case. The experience with the ebola crisis has taught Peace-loving Liberians that one who enjoys setting the House called Liberia on fire, especially through corruption, is not interested in getting water to put out the fire. This is why Peace-loving Liberians are working through the Community to transform NEC from an UNFAIR entity to a FAIR one.