I want to thank President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for emphasis made on the enforcement of the zoning law of Liberia, and to also urge her to be realistic in ensuring that this law is enforced as stated and not merely for the sake of public speaking.
As you may know, development is being hindered by payment to illegal squatters for land that they do not own, and seeing this weakness on the part of government, squatters are making use of it to get lucrative gains from Liberians’ taxes. As the President recalled in her Annual Message, such are the cases with Peace Island where the Ministerial Complex is expected to be built, the Ducor Hotel, roadside dwellers, etc. I believe Liberians engaged in this act know that they are doing wrong, but who to tell them and what action to affect their unwholesome act remain the problem. While human rights remain cardinal to the objective of this government, it is also expedient to note that to every human right there is a responsibility.
These indolent and illegal squatters will not continue to deliberately do things to benefit from our taxes while development we should also benefit from is impeded. The plan to remove them must also go with NO PAYMENT for squatting. This will bring to their senses the wrong they are doing. Let Madam President know that Liberians are law abiding when law is enforced to the letter, but when law is weak, they lose interest in that leader. Please forget about making yourself being loved now as it will come later when you do what will interest the public most.
Remember Machiavelli’s Principle on Leadership: “It is much safer to be feared than loved, if one of the two has to be wanting….. And men have less scruple in offending one who makes him/herself loved than one who makes him/herself feared; for love is held by a chain of obligation which, men being selfish, is broken whenever it serves their purpose; but fear is maintained by a dread of punishment which never fails. This goes to say that enforcing the law to instill fear in people for wrong doing will achieve the purpose of development than nurturing evil doers with money that they do not deserve. May this decision be effective and also be extended to corrupt officials.