As Liberia begins an unusually introspective line up of activities marking this year’s Independence Day, Catholic Archbishop Lewis Zeigler has stated that Liberians have to individually reflect and divert from activities that have negative impact on the country.
Speaking in an exclusive interview following the National Intercessory Prayer service on Sunday, July 20, Archbishop Zeigler said every Liberian is responsible for the wrong in the society and not just a single group or person.
According to the Catholic Archbishop, Liberians are quick to take advantage of situation to do what will harm their fellowmen, and if the country is to go in the desirable direction that people yearn for, each individual should see reason to examine himself/herself and stop pointing finger at another person.
Making reference to the current financial crisis facing the country, the Liberian prelate said Liberians are deliberately inflicting prices of locally and imported commodities in the country and attributing it to high exchange rate between the Liberian and US dollars.
He noted that corruption though is endemic here, individual Liberian is responsible and should not point at only those in positions.
The Liberian dollar is depreciating against the United States dollar with the current rate standing at 87L$ to 1US$, after reaching 92L$ last week.
As the rate increases, prices of locally produced commodities and services increase likewise. Businesspeople and service providers attribute the increase in prices to the rate.
As a result of this economic condition, L$5, which is the smallest denomination, can no longer purchase anything substantial.
Destinations to which commuters paid L$10 before now cost L$20 and above.
Archbishop Zeigler, who is renowned for preaching against societal ills, told this paper that while laws are there for people to obey, they (people) tend to do their own things to the detriment of the rule of law.
He stressed that it takes each person’s contribution in the society to make the country the way Liberians want it, noting, “We have to individually examine ourselves and clear off our own faults before pointing at others for theirs.”
Commenting on the reason for the declaration that this year’s Independence Day is to be characterized by intercessory prayers in churches and mosques, Archbishop Zeigler said it was necessary that Liberians pray because strange disasters, including the deadly Ebola disease, are springing up in the country, and no one knows why such things are happening.
He disclosed things happen to serve as signs for certain things God wants people to change, and as such Liberians should see the current events as warnings and have the consciousness to change.
Archbishop Lewis Zeigler has over the last year spoken against the increase in homosexual and lesbian activities in Liberia and said it was against God’s will. At the same time he spoke against the rampant corruption in government and private places, which he noted was causing many Liberians to face poverty.
He intoned that the declaration for national intercessory prayer was expedient because Liberians, being a people with different ways of life from other peoples of the world, need God’s intervention to rescue them.
This year’s Independence Day celebration will be characterized by prayers. The will be no parties or receptions as is customary.
Government had earlier suggested the program to be held in Sinoe and Grand Kru Counties, as other counties had hosted the celebration in previous years. The plan was cancelled, however, due to the spread of Ebola.
Over the last fees weeks, Liberians including former Public Works Minister Samuel Kofi Woods had suggested the day be observed as a national prayer day to seek God’s intervention in upholding the peace of the country, as vices such as corruption have become rampant.