President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf believes that Liberia is far behind its regional and continental neighbors in terms of economic and infrastructural developments because of the bad work ethics, laziness and indiscipline among the citizenry.
Though this thought about the country’s underdevelopment in recent years is diametrically opposed to what many considered as missteps in the governance process of the Liberian state under the Unity Party led government, the President said Liberians should begin to emulate the good examples of other African countries that are experiencing rapid transformations.
Speaking to reporters yesterday at the Roberts International Airport in Margibi County upon her arrival from the 27th AU conference in Kigali, President Sirleaf named Ethiopia and Rwanda as two countries that are being massively transformed by their citizens’ discipline, hard work and patriotism. These are examples, she said, Liberians must emulate if the country is to experience similar progress.
“Two countries that I worked in but have been transformed tremendously are Ethiopia and Rwanda. When I returned to these countries after twenty years I was shocked because they are being transformed tremendously,” she said, adding that “This is because the people have good work ethics, discipline and are patriotic…but ah, Liberia!”
She said that the Liberian government wants to bring to the country some of the good things that are happening in Ethiopia, and as a result both governments have signed a cooperative agreement. This will see the execution of projects and programs in various areas including trade, industry, agriculture and fisheries, energy and infrastructure.
“We want to see some of the good things the Ethiopians are doing happening here,” she said.
The president also said that Liberians are not appreciative. According to her, she makes a lot of sacrifices travelling the world for the betterment of the country, but said these are not appreciated by the people.
“I have just traveled 20 hours in a commercial flight and passed through three countries. All of these I’m doing to lift Liberia, but Liberians are not appreciative, and at times it is disappointing,” the President said.