“We Have Become A Nation of ‘Dokafleh’”

Members of the Faith and Justice Network

Peace Ambassador Tolbert Wants Liberians Change for Success

Peace Ambassador Reverend William R. Tolbert, III has reminded Liberians that the country was on the verge of becoming self-sufficient in rice production just before the 1980 military coup, according to a press release yesterday.

Ambassador Tolbert was speaking at a Social Justice and Church Engagement Forum under the auspices of the Faith and Justice Network–Liberia Program.

He told the forum, which brought more than twenty-five senior church leaders together, that the late Chief Tamba Taylor had millions of acres of rice under cultivation in Lofa County but did not have the capacity for storage after harvest.

“So he entered into an arrangement with former President William R. Tolbert who had a storage facility in Upper Bong County where seed rice would be stored for the next farming season,” he said.

Speaking on the topic, “Living Faith, Seeking Justice, & Pursuing Peace,” Ambassador Tolbert said, “We preach God’s word by how we live,” and cited the example of Abraham who was willing to sacrifice his only son and Paul who changed after the Damascus Road experience when he encountered the Lord Jesus Christ.

“If we want hope we have to change,” he said. “We are far from where we need to be as Liberians to become self-sufficient in rice production.”

He further indicated “We traded the purest grade of iron ore, our latex (rubber) and other mineral resources for used cars and used tires. We have become “a nation of ‘dokafleh’ (used clothes). We used to be a proud people but we have settled for second best.”

He then asked, “Why was President Tolbert assassinated and 13 ministers publicly executed? The reason given was uncontrollable corruption. However, today corruption has become a vampire.”

Ambassador Tolbert said, “Our Christian faith needs to be alive and active. We must change our minds and attitudes if we must get the Liberia we want.”

Earlier, Bishop Emeritus of the Lutheran Church in Liberia Sumoward E. Harris admonished fellow church leaders to constructively engage the government in a proactive manner. “If we only criticize them in the media, we will close the door to meaningful dialogue with those in government,” he said.

Senior Church leaders expressed concern on the prevailing issues of economic hardship, unemployment, drug abuse among the youth, security, and the procurement of loans and contracts among others. The church leaders also acknowledged that the Church needs to speak with one voice.

The senior church leaders then agreed to work together on burning issues of national concern. A working committee was set up to proactively engage the government. Those on the committee include the General Secretary of the Liberia Council of Churches, The General Secretary of the Association of Evangelicals of Liberia, the District Superintendent of the Wesleyan Church of Liberia, the General Overseer of the Restoration Baptist Ministries, and the Faith and Justice Network, the release signed by Rev. Daniel B. McGee said.


  1. Any nation that is able to feed itself/herself is on its way to development. That’s what visionary leader President William R. Tolbert was trying to achieve.

  2. The practice of accepting “DOKAFLEH”(USED CLOTHING) from people; we do not know, should be totally abolished in Liberia or perhaps in Continental Africa.
    History tells us, that DOKAFLEH INFECTED WITH THE “DEADLY DISEASE, SMALLPOX” was one of the most powerful “WEAPONS” used against us; AFRICANS. THAT, enabled the white man to easily take control and DOMINATE Africa/Africans. First to be WIPED OUT, were the entire leaderships who were offered gifts of clothing items (OUR TROJAN HORSE) intentionally laced with “SMALLPOX VIRUS”. Ban the importation of used clothings. It’s a matter of precautions and pride.

  3. Reverend William R. Tolbert, lll
    In what Year, and in what part of Lofa County did the late Chief Tamba Taylor cultivated the millions of acres in rice?
    Do you know the land area of Foyah District? Chief Tamba Taylor was Paramount Chief of Foyah Chiefdom within Foyah District. Did he cultivate the entire district?
    As Peace Ambassador, you should make statements that are true. Next time please say how many ” millions” of acres.
    Further, your statement “The country was on the verge of becoming self-sufficient in rice production just before the 1980 military coup” is false and misleading. The only person who had access to mechanised Farming in Liberia was President William R. Tolbert, Jr. As President, William R. Tolbert decided to increase the price of the hundred pounds bag of rice. He cleverly did so, in order, to sell his rice at a high price.
    You may fool your audience, but you can not fool everybody, especially not me.
    If you decided to use the assassination of President Tolbert and the execution of the 13 government officials as your topic, that was ok, but injecting false statements was completely out of place.

  4. Call it used clothing, dokafleh, bend down boutique, or what ever name you wish. We in Liberia have been wearing used clothing for as far back as I can remember, especially in the 1970s. I am 72 years old. So, to say, “We Have Become A Nation of “Dokafleh” is very false and misleading.We have been wearing used clothing for a long time Reverend William R. Tolbert, lll.
    So please preach the truth. Maybe you just got to know that, since you were among the privileged few who did not wear “Dokafleh.”
    On the other hand, a peace Ambassador should be in the middle, and not on any of the extremes. If you feel incapable of performing your duties under this government because of personal grief, than, do the honorable thing and step aside.


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