Violates the Constitutional Rights of Radio Veritas
A Liberian lawyer, in an Open Letter to the Liberian government,
through its Minister of Information, Hon. Reginald B. Goodridge,
Sr, argues that the government of Liberia refusal to renew the
short-wave license of Radio Veritas, a Catholic Radio Station,
is a violation of the constitutional rights of that entity. This
is the second time in less than two years that the government
has shut down this station.
U. S. Disengages
from World Conference on Racism?
There's a kind of conservatism in Washington D.C. these days
that is making its marks on the nation as to how the United States
deals with both domestic and international issues that confront
the Bush administration. That kind of conservatism has got many
to think and believe that other than attacking crucial and on-going
issues head on like his predecessors, the Bush administration
has opted to do the opposite by either boycotting a conference,
and constantly refusing to be a signatory to treaties that will
Can Mano River Union
Countries Achieve Peace?
Peace initiatives and agreements seem to never be in short supply
in the West African region, especially among the Manor River
Union (MRU) countries - comprising Guinea, Liberia and Sierra
Leone - which have been embroiled in crisis for well over a decade.
The problem with the peace agreements is that just as they are
signed, they are broken, by either one party or the other never
upholds them or simply finds them as a convenient tool to regroup
or a breather for removing pressure.
Alternative to Armed Violence
It was around Christmas 1989, some twelve years ago, when the
BBC announced that a group of armed dissidents had entered Liberia
aiming to overthrow the government of Samuel K. Doe. Just ten
years earlier, Samuel K. Doe had sprung into the international
political scene by assassinating the president of Liberia and
the chairman of the organization of the African unity.
Witness Director Speaks on Timber and Sanctions
Despite efforts by Liberians residing in the Diaspora and some
international organizations such as Global Witness in arousing
UN attention to the link between the prevailing terror in West
Africa and Liberian timber, the Security Council did not include
timber in the sanctions imposed on Liberia. Global Witness, an
environmental human rights group, is spearheading efforts to
expose the link between the timber industry and arms supply to
the RUF in a bid to persuade the Security Council in including
timber in the sanctions regime. Recently, The Perspective
talked with Patrick Alley, Director of Global Witness, to obtain
firsthand information on its position on the inclusion of timber
in the UN sanctions.
to Impose "State of Emergency"
Is there a threat to Liberia's security? So says President Taylor
who addressed the nation last weekend in a live television and
radio call-in show dubbed "Issues with the President,"
using a trial balloon to test the public pulse, and perhaps preparing
the way for a decision which has long been speculated to be in
the making, President Taylor told Liberians that imposing a state
of emergency was necessary in light of the current security and
other conditions in the country.
The Stem Cell Debate,
Politics and Ethics
Perhaps a stem cell tissue, one of the 60 lines President George
W. Bush spoke about during his nation-wide broadcast days ago
could have spared him few more years to live; maybe not. However,
dad died many years ago after scientists in the United States
began discussing the use of stem cell tissues to cure diseases
like diabetes, alzheimer's disease, spinal cord injuries and
other diseases that afflict mankind.
Africa and the Moratorium on Small Arms
Recently the Moratorium on Small Arms in West Africa was extended.
Set in place in October 1998, the moratorium was extended on
July 5, 2001, by the current ECOWAS Chairman, President Alpha
Omar Konare of Mali. But the extension has been described by
many as inadequate and carried out in a "light handed manner."
Behind Taylor's Locks and Keys Without Trial
Recently, the legal counsel for former Auditor General Raleigh
Seekie and five others detained at the Monrovia Central Prison
on charges of treason have filed a motion to dismiss the charges
against the detainees.
Moves to Put Stop to Theft in the Name of God
The recent conviction and sentencing of the leaders of Greater
Ministries is a triumph of truth. The head of the Greater Ministry
International Gerald Payne and several of his associates were
given long-term sentences by court in Tampa Florida on charges
conspiracy and fraud. The world knew nothing or little about
the activities of Greater Ministries International in Liberia
until this paper exposed the criminal activities the company
and its officials in Liberia, Niko Shefer and Felix Kramer were
A Cry Out For Help
- Set Mr. Dean Free!
The recent news of the arbitrary arrest yet again of another
journalist by the Liberian security forces is very disturbing
and should draw the immediate condemnation of the "free"
in Maryland County for Lofa War
As fighting flares up again in Lofa County, there is allegation
that President Taylor's dreaded ATU forces assigned to Maryland
are recruiting Marylanders for the war in Lofa. During President
Taylor's visit to Maryland, he replaced the entire police force
with 100 troops of the Anti-Terrorist Unit. The president said
that the troops will remain in the county until a police force
is trained. Maryland County has an infamous history of ritualistic
for Change and History
Perhaps Liberia would be better served if this period of our
sad and sordid history is well-documented and written about so
that those who will assume the mantle of leadership and the generations
to come will learn the important lessons of this period. This
is why some of us write and make no apology for what we write
and Investment "In the Name of God"
The Greater Ministries International Church, Greater Diamond
Company, Rock Church International, Freedom Gold, Greater Group
of Africa, Amalia Gold and Diamond, etc., have become synonymous
with scams, unscrupulous investors, hustlers, con artists, hiding
under the cloak of religion and posing as investors, doing business
in Liberia. These organizations, using clever marketing schemes,
religion and bribery, associated with organized crime in America,
Europe and the world, have found willing partners in the Taylor
regime, that is now combing the Liberian economy, transforming
it into a hub for money-laundering, arms-trafficking and drug-smuggling.
(2003) Election Should Be All About (Part 2)
As Liberians look forward to the elections of 2003, the subject
of "accountability" should be one of the major issues
to consider. The recent scandal at the Liberian Ministry of Defense
involving so-called "ghost soldiers" has not helped
the NPP government's already "negative" international
(2003) Election Should Be All About
As the year 2003 rapidly approaches, many Liberians at home and
abroad, are "curiously" looking forward to the upcoming
presidential and general elections that are scheduled to be held
in their beloved country. Given Liberia's continuing "bad"
image as a "pariah nation" and its virtual isolation
from the rest of the civilized world, they doubt whether their
war-ravaged country will actually be prepared to hold "free
and fair" elections when that day comes around.
of Support Hinders the Growth of Liberian Artists
Like many aspects of its very rich tapestry, Liberia is blessed
with many gifted and talented musicians. From Grand Gedeh to
Lofa; from Cape Mount to Cape Palmas; the country's tapestry
shows a richness and diversity that is yet to be harnessed to
its full potential. But sadly, the continual corrosive effects
of its politics have done more harm than good in elevating Liberia's
cultural landscape to much greater levels.
On The Defensive
General Anold Quainoo, the Ghanaian national who became the first
Commander of ECOMOG - the military outfit established by the
Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) - to intervene
in the Liberian civil war and help restore peace among the warring
factions engaged in power struggle, has recently been on the
defensive in explaining his tenure as ECOMOG Commander in Liberia
and how he reportedly aided and abetted in arranging the assassination
of the late Samuel Kanyon Doe.
The Death of Minnie
King Dunbar: "The Liberian Lady in the Library"
On Saturday, August 4, 2001, Dr. Minnie King Dunbar
died of a brain aneurysm in Miami, Florida after falling suddenly
ill about five days earlier. "Minnie", as she was popularly
known, was a librarian and an adjunct professor in the English
Department and School of Business at Florida International University
(FIU) in Miami.
no Apology for Truth and Justice
We do not want to engage in a tit-for-tat discourse with the
mouthpiece at the Liberian Ministry of Information. But it seems
almost impossible that the hired pens will ever relent in their
efforts to distort the issues and impugn the characters of individuals
with whom they disagree.
Rotten Carcass, not the Maggots
In view of recent barrage of assaults launched on The Perspective
and its partners by Taylor's verbal mercenaries at the Ministry
of Information, it became appropriate to revisit the sagacious
words of Dr. H. Boima Fahnbulleh in which he ably addressed the
necessity of dealing with the hired pens at the ministry.
Is Charles Taylor
Serious About Peace?
I have been listening to and watching with keen interest all
the talks, maneuvers and posturing by the Liberian ruler, vis-à-vis
the issue of ending the horror and terror he has brought upon
UN Investigates Maritime
Considered as a major source of external revenues, which has
sustained past and present regimes since much of the nation's
economy has been shattered Liberia's Maritime funds generated
from ships flying the Liberian flag - popularly known as a "flag
of convenience" - because of the country's lax maritime
laws which many in the shipping industry has exploited, now appears
to be in trouble.
Calls For Pressure on Taylor, LURD to Cease Lofa Hostility: Members of the Federation of Lofa Associations
in the Americas issued a statement in which they called on the
international community to bring pressure to bear on Mr. Taylor
and LURD (Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy)
to cease the hostility in Lofa. They also called for pressure
on Taylor to end the destibilization of the West African sub-region.
Eagles", Go Africa!
After months of anticipation and some "wrecked" nerves,
it is now history that Nigeria's very talented Super Eagles did
clinch Africa's last berth for the upcoming World Cup tournament
that is slated to be held in Korea/Japan in 2002 by convincingly
beating Ghana's Black Stars 3 - 0 almost two weeks ago in Port
Peace in Pieces is
Since his arrival on the West African political scene, Mr. Taylor
has proven himself incapable of maintaining or creating peace
around him. With his past record in mind, his recent overture
towards his political opponents is bound to surprise many. Therefore,
Liberians and others in the sub-region have certainly held their
breath over the past few weeks and are waiting where he would
take the country.
Taylor's Foot Soldiers,
"Flowers" and the UN Sanctions List
"Give a man the flower he deserves while he is alive"
does apply to almost every situation even in what is seen as
a crisis situation. There are times when situation demands that
"best friends" be accepted and willingly avail themselves
and be proud of their alliance.
The Liberian Palaver: In Search of a New Vision - An Apology
for Change: More
than anything else, settling the Liberian palaver which is a
"big palaver," will continue to be the fundamental
challenge confronting the nation, says Conmany B. Wesseh, a veteran
democratic activist and Executive Director of the Center for
Democratic Empowerment. Wesseh argues that historically, the
major source of Liberia's perennial problem lies within the "quality
of governance" the country has had. How the affairs of state
have been managed, the absence or breakdown of institutional
structures, the disproportionate participation by large sections
of the population in the decision making process that affect
them, among others, form the crux of the Liberian problem. He
further argues that unity, justice, reconciliation, human security,
etc. should form the basis of a new vision.
Education Palaver: An Impediment to Socio-cultural, Economic
and Political Advancement in Liberia: Education
should be viewed from a comprehensive and practical perspective
to settle the Liberian palaver, Malakpa contends. He argues that
the underpinnings of education must be based on morality, ethics
and the "African attitude of beholding to the masses."
These remarks were made at the July 26 weekend Town Hall meeting
held in Atlanta, Georgia, under the theme: "Settling the
Who Set The Standard?
I read with amusement, Peter Kieh Doe's platitudes floated on
the Internet about The Perspective's laudable efforts
in informing the world about the actual happenings in Liberia,
as well as his bizarre invectives, insinuations and barrage of
calumnies against one of Liberia's foremost female journalists,
Musue Noha Haddad.
Officials Test Strength of UN Travel Ban
As Liberian officials and supporters of Charles Taylor fight
to have their names removed from the UN travel list, some official
are bent on testing the strength of the ban. They have concluded
that the ban is like the one imposed by the Clinton administration
which Liberian officials have routinely violated. Liberia's West
African neighbors were charged with the responsibility to enforce
the sanction regime. To date, it seems that Ivory Coast and Sierra
Leone are performing their duties.
Fighting Flares in Liberia and Threatens Ivory Coast
DANANE, Ivory Coast -- The smoldering interconnected wars that
have plagued West Africa for 12 years, killing untold thousands
of people and driving millions from their homes, have flared
again, this time in Liberia, close to its border with Ivory Coast.
Grand Gedeh Association
Calls on President Taylor to Release all Political Prisoners:
On Friday, July 20, 2001, President Charles Taylor
released from detention Mr. Bai Gbala, Counselor David Gbala
and Senator James Chelley. The three were among thirteen Krahn
civilians and several military men who were imprisoned by the
Liberian Government following the 1998 Camp Johnson Road incident,
during which more than 300 Krahn men, women and children were
massacred. The following week, Mr. Taylor announced that he had
dropped all charges against his political opponents in exile.
Responds to Pressure," Says Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf
President Charles Taylor has made several moves in recent days.
He had freed three of thirteen prominent Krahn leaders who were
imprisoned on treason charges, pardoned exiled opposition leaders
and declared the month of August a reconciliation month, and
reliable sources in Monrovia say there is plan afoot to free
the remaining ten political prisoners including Mr. Raleigh Seekie.
ECOWAS Secretary General, Lassana Kouyate and Ambassador Streeb
from the Carter Center are currently visiting Monrovia. Why is
President Taylor making all these overtures? Is he sincere or
is this a gimmick to lure political opponents, real or imaged,
back to Monrovia to be liquidated upon arrival?
Canada Contribute to Startup Sierra Leone Court
With the UN Security Council's endorsement of the establishment
of a war crimes tribunal for Sierra Leone, several countries
have begun to contribute funds needed for the operation of the
court. The U.S. is reported to have contributed $5 million but
have pledged an additional $15 million over a three-year period.
The government of Canada has also contributed $2.25 million towards
the court's establishment.
With Sierra Leone's War Crimes Tribunal
The idea of setting up a war crimes tribunal in Sierra Leone,
similar to the ones in Rwanda and other places, is really not
new, as it has been floating around for quite some time now.
But for obvious reasons, the country's brutal so-called Revolutionary
United Front (RUF) seems to be the only group there that would
not want to see it come to reality.
Amnesty" Put to Test
In what appears to be a test of the general amnesty President
Taylor granted to opposition politicians in prison and outside
the country recently, the Unity Party (UP), the second runner-up
in the 1997 general and presidential elections, has issued a
challenge by calling upon the government, its Justice Ministry,
to drop treason charges against its standard-bearer, Mrs. Ellen
Johnson-Sirleaf, as a condition for her return into the country.
Technical Education: One
of the Vehicles To Settling Our Liberian Palaver: Education,
but more importantly, technical education should be embraced
as a cornerstone of a new educational philosophy in a reformed
Liberia, argues Marcus Dahn. Dahn further argues that the paucity
or neglect of technical and vocational education which emphasizes
science and technology has contributed to much of Liberia's backwardness.
He calls for the adoption of the 2-year technical educational
approach based on the American model. Implicit in this criticism
is the overemphasis on liberal arts education which has not addressed
the country's needs, but also not mentioned is the absence or
lack of an industrial sector that would absorb Liberia's future
technocrats. These remarks were made at the LAMA's Town Hall
meeting held this past weekend in Atlanta, Georgia, under the
theme: "Settling the Liberian Palaver."
to Building a New Liberia"
Charles Brumskine, former President Pro-Tempore of the Liberian
Senate and Senator of Grand Bassa County, served as Guest Speaker
for Liberia's 154th Independence Anniversary celebration in Providence,
Rhode Island this past weekend. Mr. Brumskine, a former ally
of President Taylor, later broke ranks, and was chased out of
Liberia by Taylor's security. He now lives in exile in the United
"Rule of Law," Says Brumskine
Former President Pro-Tempore of the Liberian Senate, now in exile
in the United States, Counselor Charles Brumskine, says unless
a substantial amount of resources used to prosecute wars be diverted
to empower the people, democracy in Liberia will remain a farce.
The Future of
Liberia's National Security
The Liberian Association of Metropolitan Atlanta
(LAMA) Town Hall meeting on "Settling the Liberia Palaver"
held this past weekend in Atlanta, Georgia, was not only spirited
but provocative. The views expressed by the myriad of speakers
made interesting food for thought which also point to the difficult
road ahead in "searching for a new vision" in a post-Taylor
era. Mr. Mathu Gibson Liberia Contemporees United Patriotic &
Strong, better known as the Contemporary Opposition, whose founder
and president is T. Q. Harris, argues that Liberia needs a strong
national security structure to guarantee its stability. Mr. Gibson
says the Contemp UPS has a plan to develop the Liberian military
into a professional force.