The journey from Monrovia to the Port City of Buchanan, Grand Bassa County in a hired Nissan Patrol jeep to start this reportorial trip took nearly three hours as we smoothly drove on the Monrovia/Buchanan highway currently under construction by a Chinese Construction Company under the direct supervision of the Ministry of Public Works.
The ride on this newly constructed highway saw residents joyously admiring their modern route, as fleet of vehicles drove to and fro their various locations, while at the same time the driver of the vehicle in which we were riding to holistically chase news and information drove smoothly as we embarked on our journey.
We were entertained with heavy sound of music oozing from the giant size speakers of our vehicle with the latest Liberian music, specifically the songs of one of Liberia’s prolific musicians, Sunday-gar Dearboy.
The driver, John Tah, perhaps in his late 40s, a native of Grand Bassa County and resident of Monrovia, and also an employee of a local car rental was seen overwhelmed as his favorite music was being played.
“I am from Buchanan City,” Tah boastfully explained about his Home County as he steered the wheel of the vehicle, at the same time observing the moving traffic, kept on, “My entire family, including by mother resides here. My father died few years ago. He died from diabetes. I was in Monrovia when I heard about his death,” our conversation began interesting as I told him about my medical problem.
“I’m sorry about the death of your father. I am also a victim of this ugly disease. My father also died from it last year – 2011,” I responded, as we kept on with our.
We arrived in Buchanan exactly 7PM, meaning we took three hours from Monrovia to that Port City. After spending few hours in the City (Buchanan), and acquiring detail about the condition of the Buchanan/Greenville highway, we again got on board our vehicle for the Port City of Greenville.
“The condition of the road you guys about to embark on is deplorable, it will take you seven to ten hours from here to Greenville. Free of these conditions, the actual time frame from here (Buchanan) to Greenville usually takes at least four hours. This long distance is due to the bad road condition. In fact as a result of this, many travelers and local business people spent weeks on this piece of road day and night; rain or shine,” this note, put us on the alert that we indeed had a long ride to make.
Yes, there was indeed a long muddy road ride despite our 4wheel drive to venture on the Greenville/Buchanan highway.
Hundreds of travelers were seen stranded, many of whom with their goods, and children; some of the kids believed to be in the age range of 4, 7, and 10, while some of the victims were pregnant women sleeping on the highway as their vehicles got trapped in heavy mud.
The victims blamed the central government for paying less attention to their plight, especially not given serious attention to the reconditioning of the country’s major highways, “We’re dying day and night from sleeping in open air due to the lack of good roads,” one of the ladies who refused to be named, but rather preferred to vent out her frustration on the Government of Liberia for her suffering said.
Our vehicle being a four wheel drive helped to pulled out some of the vehicles that got stuck in the mud, many of the marketers who bought their goods from Monrovia, and from Buchanan with the sole purpose of making business for living upon early arrival in the Port City of Greenville were made victims as their goods, mostly food stuff got damaged on the highway due to the road condition.
“I don’t know what to do. All my goods I bought, especially the cartons of raw fish I brought from Monrovia have all gotten rotten because of the road. We have spent nearly five days on this piece of road,” Mary Garteh, a business woman who in tears spoke to us said.
Mary a single mother of six is one of the dozens of victims who regularly ply the route miserably in a bid to feed her family from her ‘fish selling’ market. She appeared despondent as she addressed her plight.
For 47 years old Nathaniel Sleboe, whose vehicle got swallowed by the huge piled of mud, expressed disappointment in the local authority, noting, “These guys just don’t care for others. Because most of them, including the County Superintendent owned 4Wheel vehicles, have less worry. Their vehicles can challenge any muddy road, so they have nothing to worry about,” in a rather dejected state explained his overnight story.
The Liberian Government must seriously find reason to robustly recondition Liberia’s highways in order to enable its citizenry to have their goods and services carryout without any impediment way.
Campaign promises made during last elections of improving the livelihood of Liberians, providing better healthcare, education and improved road conditions must be adhered to…..the people are dying daily due to the lack of these services.
Join us next week for another discussion in your informative, and educative Frankly Yours.
Last Updated (Friday, 11 May 2012 09:21)