Diaspora Liberian Lauds President Sirleaf On Measures To Combat Deadly Ebola Virus

By: James Gonmiah – jamesgonmiah@aol.com

A veteran Liberian journalist and former international relief worker, Mr. James Gonmiah has lauded Liberian leader, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for the measures announced in combating the deadly Ebola virus.  

Mr. Gonmiah, one of three men that helped in the launching of the Samaritan’s Purse Liberia in 2003, shortly following the departure of former President Charles Taylor, described the measures as bold, but a little too late.  

He said that while the President should be commended for the series of measures announced, it must clearly be stated that these measures should have been taking in March when the virus started in neighboring Guinea.   Citing the example of neighboring Ivory Coast which closed its borders, Mr. Gonmiah said if the president had acted swiftly and decisively in closing our borders, we would not have been in this position today.

He criticized the government for sleeping at the wheel of state and endangering the entire population. Those who took oaths to protect citizens of Liberia should have been proactive in dealing with the Ebola virus.  It seems as though the President did not understand the gravity of the disease.  The former ELBS and ELWA reporter who spoke to us by telephone from the US, called on broadcasters, journalists and Liberians citizens at home and abroad to  get involved in communicating clearly what needs to be done to rid Liberia of this plague . Every Liberian should be involved in helping to bring this crisis to an immediate end, adding that doing nothing is not an option.

Mr. Gonmiah said the colossal failure of the Sirleaf administration in dealing with the Ebola virus, should be investigated by the Senate and the House of Representatives once the crisis is brought under control.

The President should have led the Liberian people in this health crisis by taking bold, timely and decisive measures that would ensure the total eradication of this disease, Mr. Gonmiah added.   The president should set up an informational task force.  Measures should be taken to protect health care workers at all times because they are on the front lines of this war on Ebola and some have paid the ultimate price.  This is a national emergency and should be treated as such, Mr. Gonmiah concluded.

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