POST JULY 26 Reflections: Bad Road Problem

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During the course of last week, six weeks after the 168th Independence Anniversary of Liberia on July 26, 2015, I went to Sinoe to attend the Burial of one of Liberia’s great Educators, Mrs. Frances Nyohnnohn Worjloh Mayson, who died at 97 years of age. This trip to Sinoe and back to Monrovia gave me better knowledge about some of Liberia’s problems, especially the bad road problem, and what to do to solve the problems. So, here I am sharing what I learned with all of you, readers and the people to whom you tell what you read.

The 167th Anniversary Celebrations should have been held in Sinoe and Grand Kru Counties last year, but were not held there because of unpreparedness, including the bad road condition. Well, as it was concluded that there was no longer the unpreparedness problem in 2015, the 168th Anniversary Celebrations were held in Sinoe and Grand Kru Counties. Millions of United States dollars were reported by the government of Liberia to have been spent making the road to and from the Celebrations good. Six weeks after the Celebrations, it took me 20 hours to go to Sinoe and return to Monrovia, when it should take approximately half that time when the road is good. The road is so very bad that it took two caterpillars pulling together to pull my eight cylinder jeep out of a very bad section of the road just half an hour out of Buchanan on the Grand Bassa County/Rivercess County Road.

In three sections of the entire road, it was impossible for vehicles to drive through, but Liberian unemployed youth used their shovels and diggers to make by-pass roads and helped to push vehicles to other parts of the main road that were passable. There are at least three places on the road where serious soil erosion has taken place to the extent that if no major road repair work is done this week, the road could be cut off in at least three places. The feeder roads are far worse than the main roads, making it impossible for poor people to get their produce to the market and so the produce gets rotten, rendering their already poor condition worse and worse, while few State Managers and their foreign allies become richer and richer through corruption that is now in its most deadly stage, the vampire stage. Such a Management is incapable of transformation from the bad to the good, as seen in the NOCAL saga.

The overriding question remains: how come the road became so very bad just after the 168th Anniversary? This reminds me about the remark made by a seven year old girl on Hotel Africa Road after the President of Liberia went to the Unity Conference Center to open an Ebola Treatment Unit there. The little girl said: “it looks like they fixed the road just for the President to pass and after two days the road became bad again.” Already, excuses are coming from high government sources to the effect that it is rainy season and the road will be fixed during the dry season. These excuses are not credible and are intended to continue to deceive the people of Liberia with massive corruption clearly seen in the millions of misused United States dollars on poor road construction when
there is know-how about fixing good all-weather roads. On the same Sinoe road, there is a good section fixed by a company called Solid Rock Company. Why was not the same road construction done for the other sections of the road which are now very bad? The Caldwell Bridge was just opened yesterday and you can see that the very bad 300 yards entrance to the Bridge when coming from Caldwell Junction was fixed, like paved road, during this raining season when heavy trucks were passing on the road. So, the raining season excuses of the government are not acceptable at all. The illiterate but intelligent women of West Point Township in Monrovia, convened under their Organization, the Seven Sisters, have the solution when they say that “the money problem is not Liberia’s main problem; the main problem for Liberia is the management/the leadership. With good management/governance, there can be good roads. The people of Liberia have yet another opportunity through the 2017
Elections to transform Liberia from management in a Vampire State that reproduces mass poverty to management in a Democratic State that uses the God-given resources of Liberia to improve the living conditions of the masses of the people of Liberia sustainably.

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