Former Montserrado County Superintendent says
With just three days ahead of the most publicized protest scheduled for the 7th of June 2019, former Montserrado County Superintendent Rupel E. Marshall, Sr., has said the planned protest is premature, wrong and is an act of vengeance against the people of Liberia by some defeated politicians to unnerve President George M Weah and to make the country ungovernable.
Mr. Marshall made the statement in Gbondoi town, behind the Ricks Institute on May 30, 2019, where he served as the keynote speaker at the one-day academic and sporting tournament organized by the Gbondoi Youth Association (GYA). The aim of the event was to bring together elementary school students in the Educational District #3 of Montserrado County.
Mr. Marshall told scores of student-athletes and spelling contestants at the all-day tournament that the intent of the protestors not in the interest of the youthful population as such they should stay away from the protest, adding that it is a wanton attempt by the planners to seek political relevance through the back door.
Marshall who spoke on the theme, “We relish the light of the day because we know the terror of darkness,” further described the protest as vile and vicious sour losers of the 2017 president and legislative elections.
Addressing the festive crowd, he said he believes that well-meaning Liberians are nonplussed to see certain persons who have sat in high public offices in Liberia and in the corporate world and who should know the history of their country, “offering the effrontery to the democratically elected of their own country and aiming to assault Liberia’s growing democracy.
Marshall, who served as superintendent of Montserrado County from 1986 to 1990 during the administration of late president Samuel K. Doe, further recalled that the history of protest in Liberia has never yielded a good result. He therefore warned that it must be considered by young people as unacceptable.
Touching on the existing threats to peace in Liberia, Mr. Marshall named “abject poverty, high illiteracy, corruption in both public and private sectors, a weak economy and low human resource capacity,” which he described as “loose threads of our national and political fabric.”
He said maintaining the peace and security of the state and pursuing development is more preferable than street protest. Marshall warned Liberians against jeopardizing the peace in the name of saving the state, adding that in Liberia at this time, street protests, though guaranteed by the relevant tenets of the Constitution, are abnormally dangerous activities.
Mr. Marshall said that defeated politicians at one moment stand in stupefaction of the President’s focus on the development needs of Liberia, “while on the other hand they unintentionally expose their political simplicity by bleating, cawing and spluttering expletives at the president hoping to unnerve him,” he said.
Lamin L. Sannor, president of the Gbondoi Youth Association, told the Daily Observer that Mr. Marshall’s statement was in the right direction, something which he said the young people need to take seriously. Sannor however lauded the keynote speaker for the words of caution to the youth of Gbondoi Town. “This is one of the reasons why we brought the young people together here today so that we can unite as Liberians. Protest will not solve Liberia’s problems.”
The Township Commissioner of Virginia, Tye Socrates Weah, Jr., described the June 7 protest as unwanted, saying it has the ability to undermine several achievements past and present governments have made. He called on residents of the township to be aware of some politicians who, according to him, want to save the state. “The protest may be right, but it is not necessary at this time in Liberia and the intention is not in the interest of the young people,” he stated.