Liberia For Sale

By Tarty Teh & Blamo Seekie

Here are some of the suggestions that some "influential Liberians in and outside Liberia" have made to the United Nations Security Council:

· Liberia must stop being a country for some period of time to be negociated later;

· During that time, Liberia should be ruled by the United Nations under something called UN trusteeship ( under the governorship of Gordon Summers, perhaps); and

· After however long the United Nations would have ruled Liberia, the country would then be set free to have an election.

Those are the essential ingredients of a proposal that is being driven through the United Nations Security Council by people Mr. James Jonah calls "influential Liberians." By the way, Mr. Jonah is the UN's Special Representative for Liberia. He should know what he's talking about.

According to Mr. Jonah, these "influential Liberians" see no other way to end the war but by taking away Liberia's nationhood, because these "influential Liberians" say:

They have no faith in a negociated settlement through any signed peace agreement; and They do not believe the African peacekeepers have the desire or capacity to end the war.

The immediate task before us is to identify these so-called influential Liberians. We shouldn't have to look very far to find them; because they are the same people who raised the money to arm Charles Taylor to start the war because they could not bear to see democracy flourish without their being at the head of the country.

Well, maybe "flourish" is a bit too rosy a term to describe our flirt with democracy in Liberia during the reign of the first and only administration headed by a tribal person; but we did have our first and only multi-party election in 138 years of supposed nationhood. That was a good start. Under these conditions, euphoria could be justified.

We were trying to build on that good start. Then Amos Claudius Sawyer and Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf came along and we had the Thomas Quiwonkpa invasion in 1985. When that fizzled, Amos Claudius Sawyer and Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf were joined by Clarence Simpson II and other Americos (along with such tribal bombasts as Tom Woewiyu and James L. Supuwood) to bring about the Charles Taylor invasion.

All along we had a Constitution, written by a university professor named Amos Claudius Sawyer. But from one long speech to another, seeking to justify his claim to the Liberian presidency, Sawyer made no use of the Liberian Constitution - because it did not support his claim to the presidency.

What these "influential Liberians" (who are mostly Americos) seem to be saying is this: They will sell the country if the Constitution stands in the way of their desire to take it by either subterfuge or force. This may not be so terrible a development after all; because half the battle in any struggle is knowing who the enemy is. If we can determine that these "influential Liberians" are the ones prolonging our suffering, then half the battle is over. We will Take them on.

What do you say?
If you have anthing to say in response to their proposal, send it to:

Blojlu's Journal
A Forum of Liberia's Cultural Majority
2076 National Press Building
Washington, DC 20045

Copyright © 1996 The Perspective

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