-A Liberian lawyer asserts
An official of the Liberian Bar Association (LNBA), Cllr. Bobby Livingstone, has opined that the Liberian society does not regard people of moral conduct and integrity, but finds delight in glorifying and hailing people with tainted characters.
Making the statement recently during the funeral service of Madam Elizabeth Gongloe, mother of Cllr. Tiawan Gongloe, Cllr. Livingstone, Secretary-General of the LNBA, though realized that the occasion was not connected to such a concern that entails politics, he, however, could not escape the comment because, according to him, Madam Gongloe while alive gave birth to children of values in the Liberian society, one of who is Cllr. Tiawan Gongloe, President of the Liberian National Bar Association.
Although Cllr. Gongloe is his boss at the level of the Bar’s leadership, Cllr. Livingstone assertively cited instances why he would brand him (Gongloe) as one of the human species Liberians should endorse for national leadership.
“People of this county, Nimba, you have one of the best persons who should take on a national leadership position in this country. Cllr. Gongloe, regardless of who you are to him, does not back you for doing wrong; he was emphatic to tell the national government that it was wrong to remove Justice Kabineh Ja’neh from the Supreme Court Bench, and we as members of the Bar still uphold this as the Bar’s view without regret. Cllr. Gongloe, when the Bar gave him some money for hotel bill while traveling to Nigeria for a meeting, the Bar association there took care of all his bills, and he was sincere and honest to bring back the amount that the LNBA gave him, something that many of us, not all but many of us, cannot easily do,” said Cllr. Livingstone.
He continued: “While serving as Minister of Labor during the administration of Madam Sirleaf, Cllr. Gongloe returned unused gas slips many times, and this is something that many of our public officials do not do. When President Sirleaf at one point in time told officials of government to consider themselves dismissed and to reapply for not attending a meeting with her, Cllr. Gongloe was the only person who stood firmly to tell the President that the work of the ministers was not to accompany the President and that cost him his job for saying the right thing to power.”
Livingstone said such people like Tiawan Gongloe are in the society with moral character and integrity are in the country that Liberia, if the citizens were interested in having them, would serve in national leadership, “But again, our society may not accept such people.”
According to him, people in making a serious public decision are moved by gifts of bags of rice, petty cash, few bags of cement, and festivities so that they do not critique the character of the person making donations to be elected. “Now, the mid-term election is coming in December. We will be seeing people coming, making donations of rice, cement and money, but do we care to know who is making donations and what he is capable of doing while serving the position he or she is vying for? All we know is the person has given us gifts and we must vote for him or her, but people with outstanding moral character are left out and we are giving our votes for a few items to those who will come to turn things bitter for us,” Livingstone said.
As he spoke, hundreds of people attending the funeral service in Glehyee Zorpea rained applause and shouted praises to God for having a Liberian from a different part of the country to present their son to the public as a reputable person. “He will claim national leadership one day; by the help of God, it will surely happen. That is good to hear about our child,” some were heard expressing happiness.