Why Liberia Is Not United; How We Can Unite and Develop Liberia

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By Mengistu Eddie Wolokolie

For 171 years, Liberia has tried, and we failed to be a country like America. When our founding mothers and fathers left the United States for freedom, they may have gotten their physical freedom, but not their mental freedom. Look at the facts of our 1847 constitution, it was a replica of the United States of America’s constitution. Our 1986 constitution tried to move towards the true meaning of Liberia, but it came up short.

So, this is the time for us to move our country in the direction that is long overdue. I have come to realize that change is hard in Liberia and mostly in Africa. The change we need in Liberia cannot come from the old guard, but from our generation. The generation in Liberia and abroad. Liberian leaders over the years have failed to build a middle class in Liberia. We can as a nation, at this time in our life and this time in history, build a solid foundation to leave for our children.

As children of this land, we all were affected in some shape or form. But we can’t allow our parents’ mistakes to be the defining force that will reflect our children’s future. Our generation must live for a set of values that we need in Liberia. Many of us were at a disadvantage to not grow up together like our parents’ generation because of the civil war. But I say to you that is an advantage. It is a great advantage to our generation; we were able to learn and acquire experiences of a different world.

Another advantage we have in our generation is the acceptance of each other. We are not bound by tribalism and a religious divide we had in the past. We are at an advantage because we have information at our fingertips, unlike our parents. Currently in history, at this moment we are at a crossroads in our nation. We have a President who has no core beliefs or knowledge of how to build a middle class in this nation.

A President that has surrounded himself with people that are fighting to keep the status quo government that have refused to build a nation on togetherness, a principle that if we work together we can achieve all together. It is the principle that progress can only be achieved if we as this generation put our personal self-glorification out of our state of mind. We must look at things through the lens of the generation coming after us.

What country are we going to leave for them? Are we going to be selfish and do what our parents did to us? Are we going to rise to the occasion and build a better nation for our children? Are we going to set the example that the rest of Africa will follow to make us like the kids of East Africa who have a life like the kids of West Africa, South Africa and North Africa? Our generation must work together to make sure our government and economy are built on working together and lifting the masses along the way.

We as Liberians need an economy that is creating jobs and building the nation socially. Our generation must set up a country that our kids and the kids can come up into a country in which they will not be judged by how much money their parents have. We desire a country in which every kid can go to school and get the best education without having to worry about how they will pay for it, a country in which when a family member is sick they know and believe that they will be taken care of.

A nation that knows that healthcare is a right for every citizen and not a privilege; a nation that is using its natural resources to develop her nation and improve the lives of the masses. Our generation must stand up for a government that is by the people, for the people, and with the people. We need an inclusive government that will spread the power to the people of our country. To have this type of nation we must decentralize with the upmost importance to develop this nation.

When I say decentralize, I mean that we have two levels of government within Liberia. We need a national level and a county level. The counties should be governed by their own people that live in those counties. Elected officials of these counties should be able to make economic decisions that is best for their counties. This means Superintendents should be able to solicit new business and industries in their counties to create jobs for the citizens of those counties.

For example, in 2011, BRIDGESTONE FIRESTONE announced a US$1.2 billion investment in Aiken County, South Carolina. This company opened a new power plant in South Carolina. This community sees between US$1 million to US$1.3 million accruing annually to that community.

According to Global rubber gloves market value 2017-2023 statistics, “rubber gloves market was valued at 2.35 billion U.S. dollars, the global rubber gloves market is anticipated to witness a compound annual growth rate of 7.95% during the forecast period to reach total market size of US $3.714 billion by 2023, increasing from US $2.347 billion in 2017.” These are jobs that can produce in Liberia for Liberians.

We can also tap into the steel industry. We are one of the largest iron ore producers in the world. Why are we not making steel to sell around the world? Liberian steel could be used to build ships and other steel made items around the world. We need to put our people back to work, instead of been consumers all the time. To our generation all is not lost when it comes to education, but we need to improve on it.

We need to go back to the days when education was the order of the day. We need to invest in our education system more than ever before. Education, and educating our future generation is the only means I believe we have for our country to not go back in time. We must invest in state of art facilities that will improve the lives of everyday Liberians. We must pass a law that makes it mandatory to have an education budget that is 1/3 of the country’s budget.

Under this budget we must make early childhood development the right of every kid that enters the doors of a school and not a privileged of the country. We must make grade K-12 free to attend at no out of pocket expense to parents and teachers. We must invest in our Teacher. Teachers are the driving force of our nation. The teachers are you and me. We must educate our teachers because they will be the one shaping the future minds of this nation.

Every child graduating from high school must obtain a technical skill degree before graduating from high school. We should strive to build three elementary schools which consists of grades K-5, three middle schools which consist of 6-8 and four high schools which consist of 9-12 grade. All schools within the borders of Liberia must have a technical skills program in their schools to operate in Liberia’s borders. All State colleges/universities must have an annex campus in each county.

We should have the first two years of college paid for at all state institution. As we can see today in Liberia, our health care system is not what it should be for our citizens. As for me I believe we must have a Universal HealthCare system. I believe health care is a right of every citizen and not a privilege. I believe it is the government’s duty to provide healthcare for all its’ citizens. Government must build hospitals in each county to serve the people.

Private hospitals must be welcomed to Liberia, but the government should not neglect her duties to her citizens. With a universal health care system, we can have a system that is people-centered and not profit driven. We could have people that could work in Research and development “R and D” that could improve the lives of Liberians and of Africans. In closing, I call upon the current administration and Liberians home and abroad, especially my generation, to look deep inside of your soul and find a love for Liberia and Africa as a whole.

How can we work together to build a foundation for our children? I believe I have laid out fundamentals core values that we all could build on. We all may have a different way to get there but if we believe that is the goal we want, we can work together to get there.

Authors

3 COMMENTS

  1. Webmaster admin, Do you even understand what you are writing “For 171 years, Liberia has tried, and we failed to be a country like America”. So let me get this straight, the goal is to be like America? Do you know what that means; I don’t think you do so let me shed some light.

    1. When you are trying to be like someone, you will always be in the shadow of that person. What do you think the person is doing, sitting down waiting for you to catch up with them? America (the white man) understood from the get go that they live in a competitive world and they must strive always to be the best and head of everything. They are not trying to be LIKE anyone but rather the best and head of everything. And what does this mean from a geopolitical stand point, it means you must beat the competition by doing whatever it takes to maintain your status. You must by any means possible suppress any nation that has the potential to be anything like you. STOP TRYING TO BE LIKE AMERICA AND STOP CHASING AFTER AMERICA

    2. Has this ever being heard throughout history for a man to want to be like his oppressor? Obviously you have no clue what America did to achieve the greatness that you so admired and desired today. Even the Bible warns us in Proverb 3:31 “Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways”. The key word here is NONE – choose none of his ways. And why is it important not to choose any of his ways because if you do, you will only be perpetuating the same wicked, inhumane, lack of conscience, human exploitation philosophy. Are you willing to do the same things America did and is doing today to attain their greatness? And you are partially right to say “When our founding mothers and fathers left the United States for freedom, they may have gotten their physical freedom, but not their mental freedom” but don’t you for a second think that you are free. We are still enshackled mentally unto this day, I mean, listen to yourself.

    3. It’s undisputable that our progenitors wanted FREEDOM but was never achieved. Yes they fought hard and died to be freed of the grip of their enemies but the freedom they were looking for has not being achieved on to this day. And because of the urge to be freed from the hands of their oppressors led some of them to agree to settle in what’s Liberia today not realizing the agenda behind their expulsion. The question becomes, did they achieve the freedom they wanted by coming to Liberia? I think the answer to that question is apparent because if you are following the constitution of your enemies, dressing like your enemies, speaking like your enemies, modeling your entire way of life after your enemies, and thinking like your enemies, I would not be mistaking to say you are not FREE from your enemies.

    Understand this. When the white man enslaved us, one of the first things they did to us was CHANGE our names – Why. Because NAME connects you with your history, culture, tradition and genealogy. It was also forbidden for us to READ or show any sign of INTELLIGENCE. All the ancient grey hair and educated men who could educate us were all kilt. It was done so in an effort to completely disconnect us from ever waking up and realizing who we really are. Anything that could have connected us to history, yes to greatness, have been deleted. It’s like basically we are a baby race that just pop out of nowhere. Every truth about our history, culture, civilization and genealogy have been buried or whitewashed. In brief, a whole new generation was given birth to who knew nothing about where they came from not to say their history, culture, civilization, and genealogy. This was the time (a perfect time) for the white man to implant his philosophy in us. The introduction of what I would like to call indirect colonialism.
    Colonialism was at its acme when the white man decided to bring our fore fathers and mothers to what’s Liberia today. At this point our ancestors have become completely Americanized with no recollection of their African root. What did they do first, they sent someone to survey the land mass of Africa to find a suitable place where they can establish a colony hence Liberia found. Then a piece of land was acquired from the indigenous people by America. Like I have stated earlier, our progenitors did hunger for freedom from their oppressors but it was never achieved up to this day. In fact some of them would be ashamed if they saw what was happening here today. America knew for a fact where ever they placed our ancestors, they would eventually colonize that entire region for America. The white man (America) had already planted the seed in our forefathers and mothers to propagate white supremacy philosophy anywhere they go on the earth. Our fathers had no other bucket of morality to draw from than that of the white man’s. They had no other spring of knowledge and understanding to draw from but that of their oppressors. So when they were repatriated to then Cape Mount, what do you think happened? They felt superior to the indigenous people and immediately started propagating the philosophy of their masters. In fact this has been one of the mean struggles of the Liberian political structure for ages. All the earlier presidents were “Americo-Liberian” meaning they were all born in America. The Americo-Liberians felt they were better and more intelligent than the indigenous people and that only they should hold the office of the presidency.
    Wake up people. Up to this day we have not realized what was done to us and even taking the time to examine the psychological effect of it. We look at America and Americans as gods on earth – this is nothing but Stockholm syndrome.

    Webmaster admin, you see, until we completely detach ourselves from our oppressors all our efforts are futile and no among of education will save us. In fact what we call education today is just another way of promoting white supremacy. Take a good look at Liberia, can you deny that it’s not being run by America from the inception to this day?

    Ah, heavenly Father, help us. If you will not help us then no one will and we will surely perish at the hands of our enemies. Open our eyes to see and give us ears to hear.

  2. Great article. I particularly like your emphasis on early childhood education and free universal health care, or at a minimum one that is affordable so no one is denied health care and no child should lack the basic foundation of early education. Focus in these two areas will make a significant improvement in the lives of Liberians, along with an insistence on self sufficiency in the staple foods like rice, cassava, edoes, potatoes and palm oil. There’s no need for a nation to import its staple foods.

    I think Liberians need to stop this delusional dialogue that blames another race for the current intellect of the citizens. It’s an insult to the peoples of the nation. Whatever calamity the nation faces today is a result of what its citizens did both as public officials and as ordinary citizens. The present and future of Liberia belongs to Liberians and each person ought to ask oneself, what exactly the person is doing that adds value to the nation and its future beneficiaries, in both the type of government that will exist and the socioeconomic status of the citizenry.

    America is as diverse as Liberia is tribally diverse. Yet that diversity is what compels compliance with the rule of law enshrined in the Constitution, without which there would be absolute chaos. The U.S. had a choice from its inception, to blame England and condemn anything England or borrow the governance structure of England and, improve on it for the interest of America. They chose the latter, and over the years have continued to improve on it towards a more “perfect union”.

    Liberia is thus blessed to have a living Constitution of the great U.S as a model that became the framework for its own Constitution. Liberians just have to believe in it. But nothing in the last 40 years has happened to Liberians against their will. Liberians also made choices to vote into offices public officials in the last elections, and have the right to hold them accountable to meet the needs expressed in the article.

  3. Liberians are not united because we turned our back on Jesus, we made a convinant with him long ago and promise that this country belongs to him. It was said by my instructor that the declaration of independent was signed in the Providence Baptist Church, and that signing was a convinant made between Liberia and God. Since than, we haven’t live up to our convient, but hurt God all along for many years now, and don’t want to recognize it. A nation that does not recognized God, foreigners will come from far and enjoy their land. We need to be fast about this, cause we have no time anymore, it will need all Liberian to go on their knees and cry for mercy to the Lord til he answer. We are not the people who broke the convinant, but we are the generation whose living the consequences of our furfather’s mistakes. Please share

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