Mr. Sam Mohammed Kromah, a US based Liberian has written Liberia’s 24th President, George Manneh Weah detailing some major concerns that feels should been addressed by his Excellency, and also threw out some advises he believes will bring dignity to all Liberians. See full text of the letter to the Liberian presidency.
Dear Mr. President:
Those who are obsessed with excellence and have the great gifts of determination, anticipation and steadfastness are not deterred easily and also success does not come as a surprise to them, either.
I say this because I have consistently focused on the prize of my patience in living in my beloved country of birth. I have and continue to face obstacles, debilitating conditions, discouraging results and sometimes insults from all efforts that I have made to make a difference in the lives of people that I so love.
My only quest has been to get an opportunity to exhibit my God given talent and make a difference. I have not been able to crack the shield of shenanigan because I did not pay much attention to the political culture and the chicanery. After 14+ years of chaos I thought we were sober and wholesome. This issue transcends ethnicity and religion. The person who holds the trigger and who could help you is likely the mole in many organizations. We have created a culture where we vilify honorable people and celebrate political and economic criminals. Some of the gurus do not feel comfortable seeing value creators that do not fit in the illusion they have created on the same stage as equals. They will do everything to prevent you from succeeding, including making sure that you do not reach your objective and will eventually kill your dream. We’ve developed habits that are known to be the destroyer of every good society or community. One could remain aloof, if the future of this great potential was not sliding towards the abyss of negative entropy.
No nation is so evil that it is considered lacking in virtue. Every Liberian, in one way or another, suffered from the self created mess we find ourselves. We should be saddened but should not lose hope. I am not asking that we be blind to our differences, what I am say is that we must direct our attentions to our common interests, to the means by which those differences can be resolved or be created into useful finished products-because I know that our God is a God of diversity and diversity could be a source of power and enrichment.
There is nothing wrong with being different. How we manage those differences is what’s important. Democracy is not about the gathering of people of the same views or ideas; it is about the consolidation of these different views to accommodate all involved.
Look around you. No two things are identical, in its purest sense. In order to maintain the ecological balance, our maker created the forestland, the Sea, the desert, the savanna, the high and lowlands. He created different races, different ethnic groups and different color to beautify the world. But because we are simple, we use that diversity as a reason to discriminate and try to reduce God to our own size.
“And if we cannot end our differences now, at least we can help make our nation safe for diversity. For in the final analysis our most common link is that we all inhabit this land. We all breathe the same air; we all cherish our children future and we are all mortal”.We have to sharpen our leadership skills. And remember that as leaders, we must create harmony from discord by changing the destructive forces around us into positive pursuits, which will benefit our nation. We should also remember that a great leader shows his greatness by the way he treats the less fortunate.
Where did I get my consolation and determination to stick around? From an old saying, “there has never been an endless winter”. Praise be to God, THIS WINTER is over.
The system designed, built and operated by the founding fathers and mothers of this country, 1847-1980 was driven by suppression, oppression and unjust treatment of 90% of the population by the 10% that constituted the governing body.
The responsibility of the 90% was to work and upkeep the welfare of the 10%. It was taxation without representation plus force labor, (protor/porter) along with other inhumane factors. The ten per-cent 10% that ruled the country (I didn’t say governed but ruled) was augmented by handpicked individuals by the central government to represent the people of the hinterland. These were individual that Franz Fanon referred to as, “Black skin White Mask”. The only thing hinter about them was, they came from the hinterland, but did everything in the best interest of the central government.
This system was designed, built, and operated by group of thugs who behaved like a run-away train or plantation owners for133 years, (1847-1980). It is anyone’s guest to say that they didn’t know how or did not want to develop the infrastructure of the country.
They failed to build roads because they had us carrying them in hammocks, if they wanted something from the hinterland. They took away our dignity, if you did not pay the annual hut tax. They took away our sisters and mothers as sex-slaves.
They took the strongmen among us to work on their farms for free (one had to carry enough food supplies to feed yourself for whatever time you spent working on their farms). Those of our brothers and sisters that lived with them were used as their chamber buckets and water and sewer system. They brought water in the home before and after school and carried out chamber buckets in the early morning, before school.
Here is the disturbing part that I have consistently argued against. As inhumane, repulsive and repugnant these enumerated actions are, the claim of such barbaric, savage, brutal and ungodly treatments of other human beings by some others, should never be accredited to or associated with any monotheistic religion.
So, people that claim that Liberia was founded on Christian Principles, realistically disgusts me and it smells like the dumping ground in hell. If this country was founded on Christian Principles, certainly was run by thugs. Out rightly, it is Blasphemy and these people should be asking for the mercy of God against such a claim.
They did not only fail to develop the country’s infrastructure but also destroyed the dignity in labor. Individuals worked hard and did not enjoy or get the fruit of their labors, in return. They took away the human drive that makes someone to get up in the morning to fetch for a cup of water that makes a person feel accomplished. Labor never benefited the laborer but the one who is a remote agent. This principle of baboon works monkey draws led to the natural death of the motivation to work hard, coupled with the constant tendency not to take personal responsibility for anything that went wrong. Since the officials of the governing institutions were considered the untouchables, the dream of every child was to grow up and be like them. There were no sincere efforts to instill a sense of nationalism or patriotism. It was always better if it came from elsewhere. There was no pride for country or patriotism for homeland/motherland.
My primary western education was through a Methodist school and my secondary through the combination of the Baptist and the African Methodist educational systems. Out of these institutions, I came out well rounded in the Christian doctrine. Many of my best friends are very good Christians, from my assessment. From my association with my Catholic friends, I even learned to recite the Hail Mary. My wife; for thirty eight (38) years, is a devoted Lutheran.
My hundred (100+) year old mother-in-law, that I had the privilege to live with, for over twenty-three years, is a retired Lutheran evangelist. All through her productive years she devoted her life to work for no other institution but the church. During those years, one could never attempt to suggest the number of children she helped to educate and how many of them actually lived with her.
By now you should be wondering, why am I going through all of this? It is simple, Mr. President. My intention is to draw you to the conclusion that the sensitive issue that I am about to touch is something that I am pretty much familiar with and that I am no stranger to it. For one to have the audacity to suggest that such a tyrannical system that destroyed the dignity and humanity of its people for over a century was based on Christian principles should not be tolerated and should be challenged and condemned by all God fearing people.
Our silence was interpreted as an endorsement of their claim. Our country and the mindset of our citizens are the way they are due to the behaviors and actions of these people and the system the calculatingly designed, built, and ran. At their leisure, they referred to some of us in zoological terms. We were not considered full humans. We were natives and therefore have to be cultured by them before being accepted to come even close to their personal effects.
So Mr. President, my appeal to you is, the most important thing for all of us is Liberia. There is no country or congo people, but Liberians. If Liberia is secured and protected with Social Justice, Individual Liberty, Equal Opportunity, Gender sensitivity and Press Freedom, everyone can be the best he/she wants to be. We should not allow Corruption to flourish like it has been for the past twelve (12) years.
A little over fourteen (14) years ago, in Accra, most of the people that are now filthy rich in Liberia were beggars and hustlers around the conference site. Most of them could barely afford the daily meal.
Since they were not accredited, they could not enter the conference or mess hall. It was some of us that had to feed them and upkeep them. Some traveled from the refugee camp to be able to get the daily meal and extras.
That of course has changed and it is not due to any hard, honest work on their part nor their brilliance. They have converted public trust funds, with impunity to their own.
Collectively, government officials have more money in their personal accounts than the Central Bank. The disheartening thing is not only unfair but also tough to digest. Liberia with its enormous material and natural resources continues to subject its citizens to live under such deplorable, unacceptable and unthinkable conditions.
As the corruption goes on, curable and preventable conditions continue to take the lives of our helpless people, young and old. Life expectancy is down to forty-three (43) years. And, with the deteriorating and deplorable health and environmental conditions, the next outbreak could be just a matter of time.
So Mr. President, now that the Lord has given us a second chance, Let’s be mindful of what we’ve experienced before. Be careful as these brilliant advisors continue to pop up like mushrooms. They are not all patriots. Some of them were the same ones advising the late President Doe. They misled him and when they got him where they wanted him, they abandoned him for death. A hint to the wise!!!
With due respect, I remain,
Sam Mohammed Kromah