Celebrating Independence Day under a Corrupt Regime is Meaningless: A Call to Boycott

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia
July 17, 2015



For almost a decade now, Liberia has been led by greedy stewards, political hustlers, and ill-visionary leaders. Millions of Liberians across the landscape are currently at the verge of losing hope as a result of hardship, poverty, and rampant corruption. The cloud of uncertainty now hangs over Africa’s first independent nation. The State is crumbling gradually under Madam Sirleaf’s corrupt hegemony and self-seeking empire. The socio-economic wellbeing of most Liberians is in disarray as a result of mismanagement, fiscal indiscipline, and dishonesty.

Genuine development is yet too far from the shore of Liberia. Even though our country is endowed with abundant natural resources, but vast majority (over 80%) of our people continue to linger in destitution, deprivation, and indignity. When will ‘papa’ come? Since ‘papa’ left in 2006 in search of better living condition for his family, he has not returned. The children along with ‘mama’ have been left alone to struggle for survival each day. We are asking President Sirleaf ‘when will ‘papa’ come?’ The cry for change of thousands of children and women has been so loud, but has fallen on deaf and cruel ears!

We call on all Liberians to boycott this year’s Independence Day celebration. It is meaningless to celebrate Independence Day under an unpatriotic regime. It makes no sense for vast majority of our people to observe such a day in abject poverty, illiteracy, ignorance, and disease. We cannot commemorate July 26 with a handful of ravenous, insensitive, and corrupt public trustees who continue to compromise our interest and misuse our resources.

For almost a decade now, they have led this country into socio-economic quagmire. Their greatest achievements are corruption, nepotism, patronage, inequality, injustice, unemployment, poverty, bad governance, deception, pretense, and rhetoric. How can we celebrate Independence Day when access to better health care, housing, safe drinking water, quality education, improved sanitation, electricity, employment, good roads, and social security is lacking?

  1. They promised to address poverty. Is poverty not on the increase?
  2. They promised to provide quality education. Is education not a mess?
  3. They promised to make corrupt public enemy #1. Is corruption not public friend #1?
  4. They promised to provide electricity in 6 months for Monrovians. Have they done it after 9 years?
  5. They promised to create no fewer than 20,000 jobs every year. Is unemployment rate not high?
  6. They promised to complete community colleges in all counties. Does every county have a community college?
  7. They promised to rehabilitate the Mount Coffee Hydro Plant. Have they done it?
  8. They promised to modernize Robert International Airport. Is RIA modernized?
  9. They promised to connect all county capitals with paved roads. Have Greenville, Barclayville and other county capitals been connected with paved roads?
  10. They promised to ensure each county has a technical and vocational training center. Have they done it?
  11. They promised to increase the salary of teachers and health workers, especially those working in rural areas. Are teachers and health workers satisfied?
  12. They promised to provide more support to farmers. Is food insecurity not on the increase?
  13. They promised to complete plan for a new capital city at Zekepa. Has this plan been completed?
  14. They promised to build bridges to connect counties. Where are the bridges?
  15. They promised to ensure all government and agencies are in public buildings. Why are they still renting private buildings?
  16. They promised to expand neighborhood and farm to market roads. Where are they?
  17. They promised to construct 3 regional sport academies. Do we have one?
  18. They promised to improve sanitation and provide safe drinking water. Are our people not drinking from open shallow wells, unsafe hand pumps, and dirty creeks?
  19. They promised better housing facilities. Where are they when our people are still sleeping in shacks?
  20. They promised better health care and social welfare. Is the rate of malaria, infant mortality, maternal mortality, and mental impairment not high?
  21. They promised security. Are we not still depending on UNMIL?
  22. They promised to reconcile us. Is public discontent not existing across our landscape?
  23. They promised to ensure ‘papa’ comes home every day? Where is ‘papa’ and when will he return?

Liberians have had too many empty promises from this government. We must send a clear signal to those in authority by boycotting July 26 celebration. There is nothing to celebrate when our resources are not equitably distributed and properly managed. Why must we celebrate when we live in a country of equal citizenship, but unequal opportunities? Why must we celebrate when NOCAL has gone bankrupt due to mismanagement and fiscal indiscipline?

Why must we celebrate when someone at MARITIME receives over US$ 20,000 per month, while a teacher gets less than US$ 150 per month? Why must we celebrate when the annual budget of the President’s office is more than US$ 40 million per annum, while over 36,000 students at UL receive just US$ 9.9 million per annum?

How can the people of Butaw, Sinoe County, celebrate when Community Activist Fred Thompson is allegedly killed by Sirleaf’s ruthless police as we penned this article?  Mr. Thompson et al aroused the attention of the outside world to the human rights abuses meted against the people of Butaw and Sinoe by Golden Veroleum, and were subsequently arrested on June 26, 2015.

It is needless to celebrate when our people in Sinoe and Grand Kru Counties are still drinking from creeks and living in huts. You must not celebrate with people who are subjecting you to inhumane and degrading treatments in your own homeland. You can redefine your course by boycotting this year’s Independence Day celebration.
It is time to rescue and redeem Liberia from economic pillagers……

About The Author: Martin K. N. Kollie is a Liberian youth activist, student leader, an emerging economist, and a young writer.  He is currently a student at the University of Liberia reading Economics and a member of the Student Unification Party (SUP).  He can be reached at: martinkerkula1989@yahoo.com

B K Washington
Ellen Sirleaf and her crowd may think they have gotten away with murder. But very soon they will find themselves facing a tribunal to account for their evil deeds against the Liberian people.
B K Washington at 04:23AM, 2015/07/19.
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That's the best suggestion regarding the farce of celebrating independence when the people of the two counties are suffering, and the officials would prefer to be engaged in other activities rather than waste time.
Sylvester Moses at 05:41AM, 2015/07/20.
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