Dangerous Political Rhetoric Self-Evident in the Recent Wave of Political Violence Must Stop Now

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Local media reports of statements attributed to an official of this government which are said to have been posted on his Facebook page has roused the attention of the public and for no mean reasons too.

That this government official will openly threaten to kill the opponents of this government down to their chickens is not only disgusting and despicable, it is also appalling and it constitutes a dangerous escalation self-evident in the recent wave of political violence, which must stop now.

This Deputy Minister as we are told, has often been in the spotlight and much too often for all the wrong reasons. The Deputy Minister’s threats to annihilate every single one of his political enemies even down to their fowl ranging about, is indeed threatening but certainly not surprising.

His remarks evokes chilling memories of the nation’s gruesome past associated with Charles Taylor’s “Operation No Living Thing” in which men, boys, women and children were systematically killed on Taylor’s orders in his drive to recapture from armed faction rivals what he considered lost territories.

And such talk is coming from an official of the George Weah administration. This newspaper has never failed to recall or remind current government officials that they once were opposition figures until recently.

They should also be reminded that the media also covered their activities and even publicized same. And this was, without doubt, to the liking of the CDC hierarchy, simply because the Liberian media provided them a platform to  communicate and convey their programs, platforms, etc to Liberia and the world.

Now, in their stead as stewards of the nation, individuals including opposition figures, journalists and media institutions are being threatened with death for their exercise of rights guaranteed to them under the Constitution of Liberia.

But this newspaper must, once again warn President Weah and his officials of the potential dangers inherent in pursuing objectives aimed at sanitizing the political landscape by violent means or by threats of the use of violence.

Such violence in the past has failed to quell the rather primordial urges for freedom and, like hope, freedom also springs eternal in the human breast. Perhaps officials of this government are unaware that no amount of threats of the use of violence can succeed at this point in cowering the Liberian people into a state of submission.

This is because for too long the Liberian people, until the end of the civil war in 2003, had experienced prolonged exposure to violence alongside very demeaning conditions of human existence.

Thus, their distaste for war or political violence is clear and such played no little role in the last elections when Liberians demonstrated true political maturity to the world by their peaceful and calm demeanor demonstrated during the political crisis that engulfed the nation during the past elections.

This newspaper must again warn officials and policy makers that lest they be deceived into thinking that such demonstrated peaceful demeanor on the part of the Liberian people is tantamount to poltroonery; such demeanor simply masks a hard under-core of a resilient but resistant spirit.

Truth be told, those espousing the use of  such mindless violence are simply courting disaster for the Weah administration by leading it down a very slippery slope — the slightest false move can send it plunging down into the abyss.

This is indeed a very challenging period for President Weah. The economy is in a virtual tailspin, although his officials would have the Liberian people believe otherwise; popular discontent is brewing as economic hardships continue to mount.

Rather than face the facts and tell the people the truth, President Weah’s officials appear to be doing all they can to present a different but false picture to the public. And this is wherein the danger lurks for this Government and President Weah in particular.

And this is because in the face of growing harsh economic realities, the people will soon get to realize and discern fact from fiction. As leader, he stands first in line to take up the cross. And Liberia’s political culture being what it is, the leader always bears the cross alone.

Such were the cases of Presidents Tubman, Tolbert, Doe and Taylor who all met their respective fates alone: Tubman in a London clinic: Tolbert right in his Executive Mansion bedroom: Doe at the feet of Prince Johnson in Caldwell: Taylor at the Hague and now in a London jail.

Given all the above, and guided by the experience of the past, both vicarious and real, this newspaper calls on President Weah, just as it has always done, to take charge and lead else others will take charge and lead him to an unkindly fate.

President Weah is thus being constantly reminded of the axiom that “to be forewarned is to be forearmed”.

2 COMMENTS

  1. We ought to condemn dangerous political rhetoric regardless of where they come from.

    It should include a Mr. Rodney Sieh inciting citizens to “do something” about alleged corruption as if they were the police; a Rep. Kekeh Kolubah, former psycho rebel, threatening of going “militant” to the Legislature; a shock jock commentator cum politico Mr. Henry Costa screaming about leading an “uprising” on behalf of local fishermen; a nutcase Rodney Chesson coming to lead a “takeover” of government, and the incendiary fake news spewed on Facebook by ANC executive Ms. Mouna Fathat.

    We pretend to prioritize democratic mainstays such as equality of opportunities, equal rights, equal protection of the law and fairness, but in reality some are more equal than others. For the sake of peace, we must embrace impartial fact-based conversation, otherwise, our political toxicity might rise to current Ghanaian levels.

  2. Webmaster says “And such talk is coming from an official of the George Weah administration.” So if this person is already on Facebook why not disclose his or her name. The story remains incomplete without it.

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