River Gee County Senator Conmany B. Wesseh has written the Senate plenary proposing the adoption of a “National Day of Peace,” to be celebrated on August 18 every year, as a working holiday.
According to Senator Wesseh, on that day throughout the country, there should be programs emphasizing “never again to war,” based on the causes and lessons of the Liberian civil wars, and peace festivals, cultural, sporting and other activities.
In his letter dated July 7, Senator Wesseh proposed that a “Special Medal of Peace” could be awarded in two categories at separate ceremonies – one to be named the People’s Medal for Peace to be awarded annually by the Legislature to those they believe have contributed significantly to promoting and maintaining peace in the country; the other category, according to Senator Wesseh, could be called the State Medal of Peace to be awarded by the President of Liberia to those individuals or organizations that have made extraordinary contributions to the promotion and maintenance of peace in the country over the years.
“By taking these Legislative actions in remembrance of the Comprehensive Peace Accord (CPA), we are reminding ourselves, the people we represent and those who stood by Liberia, especially those whose blood and sweat made us to be alive today, that we made a promise to keep and a vow to renew in the best interest of our children,” Wesseh concluded.
It may be recalled that after much sacrifice by Liberians, representatives of warring factions, political parties, youth and students, and other civil society organizations, crowned their many gatherings for peace by attending a peace conference in Ghana facilitated by ECOWAS, assisted by the African Union, the United Nations and the United States of America, with former Nigerian Head of State General A. Abdulsalami A. Abubakar as principal mediator.
“On August 18, 2003, the Liberian (Warring) leaders made a solemn, strong pledge to end the war by signing the CPA, which was the outcome of three months (June to August) of negotiations; by their signatures, the leaders, in our name, promised us and the world: That Liberia would never go to war with itself again; that we would never allow the use of Liberian territory for war against its neighbors.”
Senator Wesseh further recalled that Liberians at that conference agreed: “That we would rebuild, reform and re-create governing institutions such as the Legislature, the Executive and Judiciary necessary for enduring peace in this country; that we would give hope to the children and young people of our country that there is a future for which to live and work; and that we were fully and resolutely committed to peace, socioeconomic progress, democracy, and above all, love of country.”
Senator Wesseh, who chairs the Joint Legislative Modernization Committee and co-chairs the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, concluded by remembering the 250,000 people that died, the internal and external displacement of more than one million people, physical devastation and psychological damage of every family, community, village, town, and city, while social and economic infrastructure in hundreds of millions of US dollars were destroyed. And Liberia was condemned as a failed state and a beggar nation.
Senator Wesseh’s letter was sent to the relevant Senate committees to advise plenary.