On March 25 Liberians woke up to the shocking death news of Montserrado County District 15 Representative, Adolph Lawrence. He is the second from the National Legislature to die after Senator Geraldine Doe-Sheriff.
Unlike Senator Doe-Sheriff who met her demise after some period of illness, Representative Lawrence had left for Buchanan, Grand Bassa County to celebrate his birthday and when returning to Monrovia, he died in a tragic motor accident, leaving his dear wife, Senator Nyonblee Kangar-Lawrence and the rest of his families grief stricken.
Representative Lawrence was a member of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change, especially the original Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) that formed the coalition with other parties. He won on its ticket in the 2011 presidential and legislative elections.
However, he could not continue with the CDC because of his critical views on how the ruling party has been proceeding. Just before going to celebrate his birthday, he had written the House Plenary last week to invite the Justice Minister and the Finance Minister to account for the death of Matthew Innis who was said to have died from a “hit and run” accident, and the US$25 million to which investigative reports have linked the Governor of the Central Bank and the Minister of Finance Samuel Tweah.
In the wake of his tragic and untimely death, the public is witnessing grievous comments on social media posted by people claiming to be supporters of President George Weah and the CDC.
In one post, the poster said, “They think they can bring our government down, but God will bring them down one by one. Adolph Lawrence is gone; it remains Darius Dillon, Yekeh Kolubah, Henry Costa, and Martin Kollie.”
In another post, a poster said that the death of Adolph Lawrence brings to pass the prophecy of Isaac Winker, the Resident Bishop of the Dominion Christian Fellowship, who proclaimed one time that God will bring an end to anybody who speaks against George Weah or lifts up his hands against him.
There are several followers who continue to make derogatory comments in support of these posts, and some are even calling on the radio expressing their delight for Adolph Lawrence dying in a tragic motor accident only because he was critical on how things are going.
What also appears to be tacit approval to these inhumane statements is the fact that even some government officials are reported to have made derogatory comments about the deceased in the wake of his passing in a tragic motor accident over the weekend.
Even more disturbing is the fact that highly placed officials of the CDC appear to be saying or doing nothing to curtail the avalanche of irresponsible banter from CDC supporters hailing the tragic passing of Representative Lawrence, all because he dared express opposing views to government.
This is downright appalling, degrading and a gross reflection of the depths of moral bankruptcy and depravity to which this nation under the leadership of President Weah appears to be sinking by the day.
This paper, the Daily Observer, thought to flag out this issue not to dignify the ignorance and depravity displayed by the social media posters, but to remind President Weah that he pledged under the Liberian Constitution before God and man to reconcile Liberians and leave a positive mark on the country.
While addressing the United Nations General Assembly last year, Mr. President, you promised to reconcile Liberian people to get on par with other countries that have taken such an approach.
Since the CDC government took over, Liberians have been expressing themselves in peaceful protests calling for the establishment of a war crimes court to bring justice for victims of the past war.
In response, President Weah, who prior to his ascendancy to the presidency had promised to bring the court, made an abrupt about-turn and told Liberians to choose between war crimes court and “development,” though the process leading to the desired development remains murky and at best directionless.
If your desire for reconciliation is to be taken seriously, Mr. President, you have to use the local media to sensitize your followers not to make you appear to the public as an enemy to the rest of the people who are not supporters of the CDC.
Remember that the victory you claimed through popular votes in 2017 did not come only from the CDC, but from many Liberians who had no option but to elect you after their candidates had been kicked out.
Jubilation by supporters of the CDC over the death of Representative Adolph Lawrence is just fertilizing the ground for entrenched animosity that will divide Liberians more than they should be reconciled, and it is time that, Mr. President, you take firm action to halt this wanton display of crude madness. Indeed Mr. President, this newspaper holds the view that the character of this nation cannot be defined by the action of soulless zombies intent on spreading hate and animosity just for a few pennies.
In view of this, the Daily Observer is once again constrained to warn President Weah of the implicit danger posed to national peace and stability by CDC supporters bent on stoking fires of hatred. This newspaper calls on President Weah, as usual, to take charge and lead or accept to be led to an unkind and untimely fate.
Beware, Mr. President, that the bells now tolling for Adolph Lawrence could also toll for you or any of your supporters, for that matter.
The great English poet John Donne in his master piece “Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions, Meditation XVII” reminds us, “… any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bells tolls; it tolls for thee.”