Liberia: A Country Of Wonders And Surprises – Visiting Female American Politician Asserts

royalairmaroc{By: Joel Cholo Brooks} – “Liberia is indeed a country of wonders and surprises”, a word of a visiting female American who and I flew together on board the Royal Air Maroc airline from the United States to Liberia on an official visit.

The lady during our acquaintance conversation on board of this airline from New York’s JFK Airport, expressed enthusiasm for what she described as her ‘Historic’ trip to Liberia during our discussion.

Joyce Cruz  believed to be in her late 50s and a resident of Manhattan New York, spoke highly of Liberia, especially being the first nation to elect a female president, noting, “I admired this move by your people (Referring to Liberians) to have elected a female president, Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf,” Madam Daniels sipping her cup of tea on board the plane begin her friendly chat after introducing myself as a Liberian journalist heading back home.

Being anxious to know about Liberia’s political history, especially when the country is preparing for another historic election in 2017, Madam Daniels, sitting in her seat close to me asked about the Liberian political playing field.

“Is Africa’s first female President contesting again for the 2017 general and presidential elections”? She asked, referring to President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the current Liberian president.

In response to Madam Daniels’ teasing question as I also sipped my cup of tea, I replied to her question that the President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf will not contest this time after the completion of her second term in office as President.

Clutching on her seat to ask further questions, since she knew from the genesis of our chat of my profession as a Liberian journalist, she once again threw another amazing question, “How many political parties queuing out for the 2017 elections, and who are those contesting for the presidency”? She again asked as I took a deep breath pondering over the reported huge number of registered political parties in my country, and the large number of candidates vying for the country’s highest seat, the presidency.

This question being asked reflecting on United States, the world’s superpower with only two political parties, the Democrat and the Republican, I again pondered, being a bit ashamed to announce the number of political parties in my tinny country with less than four million people.

However, I told her that Liberia at the moment is crawling to have a little over two dozens of political parties, this number also applied to their respective presidential candidates.

After announcing this to her, the expression on the face of my Royal Air Maroc companion had changed, apparently astonished over such number of political parties and presidential candidates.

As I release this information about the current status of my country political playing field to her she appeared riddled noting, “Liberia is a country of wonders and surprises, while these number of political parties and presidential candidates”? She asked with a glaring smile on her face.

“You mean your country is being faced with this number of political parties, why some of them cannot merge?” she asked as I reasoned with her question. As we enjoyed in our seven hours flight from the Casablanca Airport, Morocco to Roberts International Airport heading for Liberia, my flight companion who said she is a niece of one of United States Republican presidential candidates, Ted Cruz amused me with some facts of the current US election campaign.

As we continue our flight in the air, my flight companion kept saying these words, “Liberia is a Country of Wonders and Surprises,” which amazed me to ask her, “Why are you saying this? Quizzing her to tell me why she kept saying these words during our discussions regarding Africa’s oldest republic upcoming elections in 2017.

“I love your country that’s why I am visiting it, I have heard a lots of its contributions to world peace. I also read about its encounter with the emergence of various civil wars which led to the destruction of its many beautiful infrastructures, and the election of Africa’s first female president,” she told me the reason of her many questions to me about my country.

One thing she did not forget to ask me about as we continue our journey is the reported news of rampant corruption in my country, and why it cannot be stopped despite of the reported fight launched by the president of the country who is been admired internationally.

However, she was quick to note that it is difficult to eradicate corruption, but could be minimized, saying “This uncivilized act, I mean corruption could be minimized if those who are serving in positions of trust are committed to the development and growth of the country. Nationalism should always be applied, if Liberia must succeed,” she advised.

As we finally touched down at the Roberts International Airport at 4:55Am, she murmured as to whether we have reach our final destination, I smiled and replied affirmatively, “Yes we have finally reach, this is our International Airport,” smiled as both of us took over our luggage after going through airport screening formalities.
Yes indeed Liberia is a country of wonders and surprises. Join me next week for another episode of travel.

Written By Joel Cholo Brooks – GNN-Liberia Publisher

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About Cholo Brooks 13335 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.