By Dr. Amos M.D. Sirleaf (Ph.D.)
Supporting Liberia’s Reconstruction and Development to reflect the Pro-Poor Mission and Vision Oriented Agenda, a political, social, and cultural relevance and conscientiousness, our constructively and progressively engaged spontaneous action as Liberians, is always the best for our collective consciousness for our uncompromising national development agenda.
A post-conflict paradox of poverty admits spontaneity of construction consumption as it reflects on Post-Ellen’s Elections 2006-2017 Liberian Situations; one cannot, or a people cannot with their best deliberation and heed, come so close to any question as their spontaneous hit or glance shall bring them. Ralph Waldo Emerson “Through spontaneity we are re-formed into ourselves”. Substantially, this development, in many instances, creates an explosion that for the moment frees us from handed-down or welfare dependency frames of reference, memory choked with old facts, and information and undigested, and techniques of other people’s findings.
Over and over again, the hope and trust in oneself must serve as a reminder for them to never exclusively rely or depend on anyone or a political system of interest in this opportunistic complex global community.
Spontaneity is the moment of personal freedom when we are faced with reality, and see it, explore it, and act accordingly. In this reality; the bits and pieces of ourselves function as an organic whole. Reference to the present political state of affairs, this can be a reflective time of discovery, of experiencing, of our creative initiatives and nationalistic expressions of trust and hope.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s inauguration as the President of Liberia in January 2006 marked a watershed Liberia’s tumultuous history. Twenty-five years of corruption, misrule and civil war under Samuel Doe, Charles Taylor, and successive interim governments did leave Liberia in complete ruins. President Sirleaf, the first African woman to be elected head of contemporary nation-state, energetically set Liberia on a new course, in the context of putting accountability, transparency, good governance, and economic opportunities for all Liberians at the center of her agenda.
Center for Global Development (CGD) senior fellow Steve Radelet and others from the Center were advisers to President Sirleaf and senior members of her government from December 2005, the month before she took office.
The substance of the work was a wide-ranging and did include aid coordination, aid quality, debt relief, poverty reduction, and growth strategies, capacity building, and civil service reform, among other issues. Debt relief and aid coordination were particular areas of her focus.
This level of engagement in a developing country demonstrated some unusual principles for CGD because the primary focus was on improving the policies and practices of the rich world towards development. In addition to being helpful to Liberia, the relationship provided CGD a unique opportunity to observe the complex interactions between donors and a developing country in the early stages of recovery from conflict. Based upon this end, it is essential to point out that autocratic rule, coups and finally civil war in the 1990s took a devastating toll on Liberia.
More than 250,000 Liberians lost their lives in the useless genocidal civil conflict. Average income fell to one-eighth what it was in 1980, making Liberia one of the poorest countries in the world. Infrastructure was totally destroyed based on my personal and physical presence on the ground from 1987, 2006, and 2008 respectively, and families and communities were absolutely destroyed, dissipated, and torn apart. Warlords used the country to smuggle diamonds and traffic in arms and drugs, bringing chaos to the country and destabilizing all of West Africa, specifically, creating a post-civil conflict’s conflict among the dislocated and dispersed Liberians at home.
Liberia’s Recovery From Devastation
The country made a relative significant progress during President Sirleaf’s first year in office. The establishment of a cash management committee to check every expenditure and increased government revenues by 48% by cutting down on corruption and increasing tax compliance was within a competitive post-conflict reconstruction and developmental strategic direction.
About the author: Dr. Amos M.D.Sirleaf (Ph.D.) is a Professor of Blacology Research and Development Institute, Inc. USA Liberian Mission.