‘This is Our Time To Eat’

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Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor’s remarks that “This is our time to eat. We will eat but we are going to do it in a way that everybody will be able to eat” to District Commissioners in Bong County has, without doubt, struck a very sour note given the avalanche of public criticisms which have since attended them.

Moreover her suggestion that service in government is open only to those who have taken membership in her Coalition for Democratic Change appears to have confirmed the public’s worst fears about the resurgence of the Charles Taylor agenda as she promised during the run-up to the 2017 elections which saw her ascendancy to power as Vice President of Liberia.

According to political observers, the Taylor agenda as many Liberians would recall, was one of plunder, rape, pillage, murder, conscription of child soldiers and unbridled looting of the country’s resources. Although questions yet loom about how much Vice President Howard Taylor knew of her husband’s crimes before he was elected President of Liberia, observers say she was a regular visitor to Taylor’s Gbarnga headquarters at a time when Taylor’s bloody footprints were visible all over the country.

Whatever the case, her recent remarks threatening dismissal for those District Commissioners in Bong County who do not hold membership in her ruling Coalition, as well as her “this is our time to eat” remarks do suggest that she may be tracing her jailed former husband’s footsteps and taking her cue from Taylor’s playbook. Moreover, according to political observers, her utterances that it is now her “time to eat” conveys the unmistaken impression that Vice President Howard Taylor appears predisposed to theft of the nation’s resources under whatever guises.

They cite for example the case of the Bong Community College whose construction has virtually grounded to a halt. It may be recalled that President Sirleaf in 2010 broke grounds for the construction of the college. About 4 million US dollars was budgeted for the college however the amount was later raised by 2 million dollars and it was scheduled to be completed by the contractors, China Investment Group within a year following groundbreaking ceremonies.

This, however, did not happen apparently for financial reasons. It may also be recalled that at one point the contractors threatened to stop work on the college because the Project Management Committee under the guidance of the Bong County Legislative caucus was not meeting its obligations.

In 2015, according to sources, the county’s leadership including its then Superintendent Selena Polson Mappy, Senator Henry Yallah and former representative, George Mulbah amended the contract to provide an additional 1.8 million US dollars to complete just the basement of the college. Although the money was paid the work was not done leading county officials to begin trading blame for its failure.

At the time the construction came to a halt in October 2016, only 60 percent of the work had been completed thus leaving students with no alternative but to attend classes in the uncompleted structure which did not even include laboratory facilities. The resultant situation stirred public anger and led to street protests in Gbarnga with protesters charging county officials for receiving kickbacks which in their opinion led to the project stalling.

Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor was at the time a leading figure involved with the project and she ws accused of having written the MNG Gold Mining Company requesting scholarships for students to the tune of 10,000 US dollars. The former senator and now Vice President is alleged to have written the mining outfit directing that the funds be paid into her personal account at the Bank of Scotland bearing account number #12198967.

This was even reported in some local dailies. However Senator Howard Taylor denied the allegation describing the account number as fake because she did not own such an account as was reported. She claimed instead of depositing the requested amount into the college’s account.

She further said that all communications with the company was done on paper and not by email. “So for someone to raise some US$10,000 issue that Senator Taylor gave one account and say you must transfer it in some foreign country somewhere is farfetched. Someone is trying a game,” she said. Meanwhile, public reaction to Vice President Howard Taylor’s remarks aired on various radio stations yesterday were all unequivocal in their condemnation of the Vice President for her stance demanding that all District Commissioners join the CDC in order to maintain their jobs.

“To show you all that some people who are sitting here are not members of the Coalition, you know we don’t have nothing in our hearts against you all because I would have said remove everybody. What would you have done to me? Nothing! This is my time. Nothing you will do to me. This is my time. We are not coming to give our birthrights to other people. This is our time to eat. We will eat but we are going to eat in a way that everybody will be able to eat, too,” she stated.

Meanwhile, against the ensuing public outcry, President George Weah has maintained a stony silence over what some of his supporters say are divisive remarks by the vice president which they say runs counter to President Weah’s inaugural pledge to run an inclusive government.

At this point it remains unclear where President Weah stands on this issue. However, given the recent strain between the President and his Vice President over her unauthorized frequent foreign travels which became public, it appears unlikely that President Weah will openly upbraid his second in command in a similar fashion which may have led to her tendering of public apology to President Weah.

Authors

9 COMMENTS

  1. Is our country only met for people or regime to eat? Why we do not allow the country itself to eat too? Because people or regime eats rather than the country, that could be one reason our country is the way it is.

  2. I am not surprised that a Vice President made such a statement. Liberians are not used to holding their leaders accountable for their statements, actions or deeds. This statement in many countries will lead to her resignation. There is no doubt left in anybody’s mind that the statement “our time to eat” in our country, Liberia, with a history of corruption of past regimes means she will also be corrupt/steal. She is not new to the scene. Is this the brutal change people voted for ? This woman is power obsessive and her behaviour speaks a volume and is typically reminiscent of the NPFL days . Happy resursection NPFL!

    Why is Weah silent admist all the controversy? Who runs the show? I am glad people are reacting to this. She wants to be Bong County into submission by instilling fear! I hope the people of Bong County will wake up!

  3. The people (the majority of voters) get the government they deserve. Our people were cautioned over and against voting the likes of ex-rebel wife, Jewel Taylor, into power, but ignorance prevented them to listem to the advice. Now they have what they have for six long years. They should crave themselves for more strange things during this time. Sorry for the homeland.

    • It can’t be said better Badi! Well said. Deep down in my heart I really appreciate Weah ( From countless accounts, I heard he helped many Liberians home and abroad during his careear, and I believe this is worthy of admiration) but “he is dancing with wolverine, a real devil’s incarnate !”. This woman defends Charles Taylor’s actions, yet many Liberians follow her like sheep following the shepherd to the slaughter . Weah needs to really hold this woman accountable for her actions. The country can’t run like this. This woman lacks manner of approach and is ready to resurrect NPFL! Weah will get caught in a dilemma sooner or later! BONG COUNTY, WAKE UP! THIS IS NOT A TRIBAL THING, THIS WOMAN IS NOT ACTING IN YOUR INTEREST!

      ALL ELECTED OFFICIALS OF THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD ACT IN THE INTEREST OF THE GOVERNMENT DESPITE THEIR SOCIAL,POLITICAL OR RELIGIOUS APPARTENANCE ! BY VIRTUE OF HER BEING KPELLE SERVES YOU NO PURPOSE! IS IT HER KPELLE AFFILIATION THAT DEVELOPES YOUR COUNTY OR PUT FOOD ON YOUR TABLE ? HOW DO YOU BENEFIT FROM HER BEING KPELLE ? OH ! IS THREATENING YOUR RESPECTIVES CHIEFS CONSOLING FOR YOU?

      ONE THING WE SHOULD BEAR IN MIND IS , ALL ELECTED OFFICIALS SHOULD ACT IN THE COUNTRY AS A WHO AND NOT A SPECIFIC TRIBAL GROUP! THIS IS A MISCONCEPTION IN LIBERIA. LIBERIA WILL NEVER MOVE FORWARD IF WITH TRIBALISM! WE CAN ONLY MOVE FORWARD IF WE UNITE AND MAKE SURE OUR CENTRAL GOVERNMENT “STEWARDS” ACT IN THE INTEREST OF OUR COUNTRY. LIBERIA IS TOO OLD FOR THIS , 1847 AND WHERE ARE WE IN COMPARISON TO OTHER AFRICAN COUNTRIES THAT WERE COLONIZED? NOWHERE! I AM GLAD SOME LIBERIANS GOT ON THE AIR AND NET TO MANIFEST THEIR INDIGNATION FOR SUCH UNWORTHY BEHAVIOR FROM A HIGHER PUBLIC OFFICER SERVANT OF THE PEOPLE!

      • CORRECTION
        ALL ELECTED OFFICIALS OF THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD ACT IN THE INTEREST OF THE COUNTRY DESPITE THEIR SOCIAL,POLITICAL OR RELIGIOUS APPARTENANCE ! BY VIRTUE OF HER BEING KPELLE SERVES YOU NO PURPOSE! IS IT HER KPELLE AFFILIATION THAT DEVELOPS YOUR COUNTY OR PUT FOOD ON YOUR TABLE ? HOW DO YOU BENEFIT FROM HER BEING KPELLE ? OH ! IS THREATENING YOUR RESPECTIVE CHIEFS CONSOLING FOR YOU?

        ONE THING WE SHOULD BEAR IN MIND IS , ALL ELECTED OFFICIALS SHOULD ACT IN THE INTEREST OF THE COUNTRY AS A WHOLE AND NOT A SPECIFIC TRIBAL GROUP! THIS IS A MISCONCEPTION IN LIBERIA. LIBERIA WILL NEVER MOVE FORWARD IF WITH TRIBALISM! WE CAN ONLY MOVE FORWARD IF WE UNITE AND MAKE SURE OUR CENTRAL GOVERNMENT “STEWARDS” ACT IN THE INTEREST OF OUR COUNTRY. LIBERIA IS TOO OLD FOR THIS , 1847 AND WHERE ARE WE IN COMPARISON TO OTHER AFRICAN COUNTRIES THAT WERE COLONIZED? NOWHERE! I AM GLAD SOME LIBERIANS GOT ON THE AIR AND NET TO MANIFEST THEIR INDIGNATION FOR SUCH UNWORTHY BEHAVIOR FROM A HIGHER PUBLIC OFFICER SERVANT OF THE PEOPLE!

  4. What does the constitution say about the replacement of a vice president or the right of a sitting president to select or dispose of a mate for another. For example C. L. Simpson and W.V. S. Tubman. The mistake can be corrected if this President sees that he mates with a prisoner’s divorced wife who is out of context repeat, is not in consonance with the position. She must be given an alternative to save guard the status of the vice presidency. She should remarry in love to a democratic partner (natural born man), get a reputable name to build a vice companionship with the Liberian Cap or face the consequences of resigning and/or being ousted leveled as the ex-wife of an ex-rebel divorced vice president of a present dictator Freetown World court prisoner now in a colonial prison. The Liberian people cannot afford to continue to have a Vice with such low standard on line with a democratically elected ex-soccer star 34% registered President seeking and asking Liberians to raise the standard of his people, while depending on this nation’s resources to reconstruct its infrastructures. The Liberian people should be told. Do not answer my box.
    Gone to silent majority in silence.

  5. Vice president Taylor you been for several years in this so this it is not strange to the Liberian people.You and your former husband Charles Taylor stole from this country for so long so telling us it is our time to eat it is not strange to us yaaaaaaa

  6. vice president Taylor you been eating for several years in this country for so long this it is not strange thing to the Liberian people.You and your former husband Charles Taylor stole from this country for so long so telling us it is our time to eat it is not strange to us yaaaaa ma.

  7. How much difference was there between the Taylor agenda (one of plunder, rape, pillage, murder, conscription of child soldiers and unbridled looting of the country’s resources) and that of the Ellen agenda? There was only one absent ingredient on Ellen’s plate – conscription of child soldiers.

    Taylor and Ellen are of equal ranks.

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