Citizens in Montserrado County and its environs are urging President George Manneh Weah not to divide Liberia with his recent proposal of granting citizenship to foreigners and giving them the power to own property here.
There was a heated street debate among Liberians on Broad Street at the open Sports Commission over President Weah’s proposal; with some saying his call was not a bad idea to grant foreigners citizenship.
“We believe you are the Messiah to liberate Liberians from the hands of bad governance, but the trend you have started with has the propensity to create division in our country,” said Mr. Jeremiah Kollie over the weekend in Monrovia.
Speaking to this paper in an exclusive interview, Mr. Kollie pleaded with President Weah not to divide the country, arguing that the masses’ problem has not been dual citizenship. He claims that for more than 173 years, Liberians have had problem with good governance and not dual citizenship.
Mr. Kollie opposes dual citizenship, wondering how many Liberians would be found to own properties in countries like Lebanon, China, and India, among others. Mr Kollie notes that the reason many Liberians including the youth here overwhelmingly voted President Weah is the thought that he is the real person that has lo ve, feeling and understands the suffering that people are undergoing.
He urges the President against starting things that will create argument and result into confusion, saying “Dual citizenship and the right for foreigners to own properties here in Liberia have not been the problem faced by this country.
He insists that President Weah hasn’t talked about the real problems that Liberians are encountering citing decent work bill, the exchange rate, and price of rice, though the latter has already been reduced based on the president’s negotiation.
Mr. Kollie pleads with President Weah to give attention to these key issues and not dual citizenship, saying “we believed when the president focuses on these things, no one will want to criticize him.”
He says the discussion in the streets is so discouraging and it is not time for one to start facing disagreement with people that he says he loves after being voted overwhelmingly in office to transform their lives.
Another passerby identified as Theo Kahn wondered why the president didn’t push for the dual citizenship issue when he was at the Liberian Senate if he was so concerned about it.
He notes that President Weah that many have trusted as the redeemer must put on his thinking cap instead of doing things to cause problem.
By Lewis S. Teh–Edited by Winston W. Parley