George Weah’s New Dispensation Begins to Take Hold

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By Jeremiah Jefferson Kringar Harris, Sr.

George Weah’s New Dispensation officially began to take hold on inauguration day, January 22, 2018, at the SKD SPORTS COMPLEX, in a ceremony befitting the overwhelming mandate given him by the masses. The turnout was stupendous, with the largest crowd to ever witness the inaugural of a Liberian leader, a clear manifestation that this government belongs to the people. This, of course, reveals   the high hopes of the vast majority of our people that they would have no recourse to regret their decision to embrace Weah’s candidacy with the euphoria that they displayed throughout the campaign; this swept Weah to victory in a massive tsunami that clearly reflected the people’s will. Following this overwhelming mandate, George Weah pledged that his government would be committed to a Pro Poor Agenda.

At this point, the players key  to the crafting and successful implementation of the government’s Pro Poor policy are now in place at the Ministries of Finance, Commerce, Labor, Foreign Affairs and the rudiments of the  Pro Poor Agenda have now begun to take shape . As would be expected, the National Budget inherited from the Unity Party Government has been duly recast to reflect the priorities of the agenda. This signifies Weah’s determination to keep his word. All things being equal, this is a good sign.

The skeptics, as always, seem to wonder what this Pro Poor Policy entails. Is it simply a novel ideology that has not yet been tested? If so, is it practical enough that it could be implemented with the zeal and commitment that would fundamentally recast the lot of our downtrodden masses so that abject poverty no longer resides next door to opulence in this country? Given the dire straits of our national economy and the government’s severe financial constraints in the wake of the depressed prices of the major commodities on the world market (iron ore and natural rubber) which drive the Liberian economy and generate the revenues that fund government operational expenditure, is it in the long or the short term that the benefits of the Pro Poor Agenda (PPA) would begin to impact the plight of our unfortunate brethren? Would our people be patient enough to await a resolution of their situation in the long term, if for some reason there is a shortfall in funding to jumpstart the PPA in the short term? These are some of the fundamental questions that our economic planners, politicians and strategists must carefully consider and seek to adequately address as they begin to chart the course of our nation’s future. Succinctly put, there cannot be a quick fix in view of the nation’s current economic realities. This is a tall order for our economic planners and politicians who must now craft the road map of the Pro Poor Agenda (PPA) with caution to ensure that there is no deviation from the ultimate goal of taking our people out of poverty and creating a level playing field for all Liberians.

The CDC government has been in power for barely two months now and, already, a trend of bold action is beginning to emerge. For instance, Josephine Davies, the new firebrand Inspector General of Professor Wilson Tarpeh’s Commerce Ministry, as if on cue, has embarked on an aggressive campaign to eradicate potentially hazardous health threatening expired food and medical products from the Liberian market. She invaded the ware houses of some of the nation’s largest importers of food products at the Red Light Market in Paynesville city and the famous Abijoudi Supermarket on Randall Street, the nation’s largest. And guess what? Tons upon tons of expired food products were discovered, seized and are now in the process of being destroyed, with hefty fines imposed on the Lebanese businessman who owns the largest Cold Storage in the country and the proprietors of Abijoudi. Professor Tarpeh’s entire team must be given kudus for their audacity in confronting a malady that could ultimately create serious health difficulties for lower income Liberians, because they are the ones who would be most attracted to the cheap expired products given their affordability. There must be no deviation from this bold action as the New Dispensation begins to take hold, since this would defeat its ultimate goal to bring relief to Poor Liberians, who, by design, are the intended beneficiaries of the Pro Poor Agenda.

Recently, the Minister of Finance announced that policies have been put in place to ensure that all civil servants would receive their salaries by the 25th of each month. This is a further manifestation of the CDC Government’s determination to create a level playing field for all Liberians. It had been the standard practice of the previous government to pay Ministers, Deputy Ministers and other high ranking officials of government their salaries early, deliberately neglecting civil servants salaries until the middle of the month in most instances. Top officials of the Unity Party Government couldn’t care less as long they got their salaries on time, although they were acutely aware that civil servants are the ones who run the day-to-day operations of the government. This was inherently unfair and speaks volumes about the lack of compassion by many officials of the Unity Party Government for the plight of lower ranked civil servants, who were expected to be at work every day in a timely manner. This inherently gross injustice had become institutionalized. Well, good riddance, this shall no longer suffice, thanks to the new policy. The New Dispensation is off to a very good start and the naysayers cannot keep the ball from rolling, as it would appear that more good news for the masses is definitely in the making, in view of the sincerity of the President and his determination to improve the lot of less fortunate Liberians by introducing and implementing programs designed to defeat poverty and create jobs.

Significantly, the government must be on its guide against renegade elements of the defeated Unity and Liberty parties, sour losers, who seem bent on creating doubts about Weah’s Government by resorting to Social Media to disseminate fake news and sow seeds of discontent in the minds of our people before the government even gets started with its ambitious agenda of alleviating poverty and destroying the demons of destitution.  Don’t they realize that this is a honeymoon period for this young government which is still far removed from its first hundred days? Has a newly elected government at any point in history been able to correct the mistakes of twelve years of bad governance in just two months? This is a mathematical impossibility by any stretch of the imagination, therefore it would be well advised were the gentlemen of the opposition to respect the rules of engagement of the Liberian political landscape and gave George Weah some breathing room; this is only fair. The game of politics is beautiful to watch and is more beneficial to society when it is played with finesse, craft and a diplomatic nuance devoid of the ruthless deception akin to the Machiavellians; all players must acknowledge and respect the rules of engagement that govern the national political landscape. Let us not forget that disunity breeds conflict and is a formula for disaster.

And so you have it.

Author

2 COMMENTS

  1. ” Let not Spider missed the Worth All Small Things”.
    In a government, there are civil servants of all ranks and stratum that are serving the people of a nation. The productivity of said government is measured by the dedications that all are contributing. The above article mentioned of ministers were paid ahead of low ranking civil servants, serving in the past government. If that is true, then we were missing the worth of the “little guys” that are serving our society at the “minnow” level. Porters, janitors, teachers, etc.

    If we will build a nation based on equality, we should also recognize and appreciate other efforts and contributions that are part of the fragments that will make the whole complete.
    Ounce upon a time, in the Land of Famine, Mr. Spider had so many
    visitors. Spider, known to be greedy, greeted his visitors in
    order of their “importance”. He (Spider), ranked their importance
    of what he thinks individual visitor meant to him. The visitors were:
    Mr. Spoon, Mr. Rice, Mr. Soup (could be any typical Liberian soup), Mr. Water,
    etc..The visitors formed a single line and shocked Mr. Spider hand one-
    by one, and waited a while and see if he/she will be given a seat at the
    court. Mr. Spider continue to tell each visitor good bye, until he realize
    that only Mr. Rice was remaining. When Mr. Rice shocked Spider hand, he offered
    Rice a seat . Rice refused to sit down, on ground that non of his colleague
    was around to hang out with. As hungry as Spider was, he became to
    chase Rice. It was too late for hungry Spider.
    This simple folk tale tells us a beautiful moral lesson. People should be appreciated for their contributions they made in society.

    In conclusion, I say thank you Mr. President for recognizing the effort made by the lowest of your civil servants. If every civil servants including ministers, receiving their various salaries at the same time, we soon realize that every one will be putting in their 100%. Then our country will move forward, in the right direction. We will not be like Mr. Spider, realizing his errors at the 11th hour.

  2. Errors: Lines in middle paragraphs are interrupted. Reason: this piece was first written on a mobile phone, which did not have “font editing”.

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