The world, including Liberia, is already into the much-anticipated New Year, following a celebrative Holy and festive season.
Usually, the beginning of the New Year is marred by resolutions, commitments and messages, most of which are not actually fulfilled or upheld due to various reasons.
The fulfillment or success of these resolutions, commitments and messages are greatly dependent on the selflessness, hard work and unity of those from whom they come.
In her New Year Day Message on Friday, January 1, 2016, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf challenged the people of Liberia to resolve to demonstrate their love for Country, further entreating them to take heed that above all of the diverse views and political debates – sometimes even political bickering, a spirit of tolerance and patriotism will prevail.
The President further admonished Liberians to be ever mindful that they are together on a ship of State – a single ship of State, which must be kept on an even keel, noting it is then that ‘we have the greatest chance for prosperity’.
She however challenged all and sundry to forge ahead as “One people, one Nation, united for peace and sustainable development.” “As each year brings new challenges and presents new opportunities, it is incumbent upon us as a nation to move into the New Year optimistic that the challenges, anticipated and unanticipated, will be adequately addressed,” emphasized the President in her New Tear Message.
It is undisputable that the nation’s entry into the New Year with ‘forward strides and peace’ – though with challenges, is truly God’s Grace. But one thing to which we as a people must face as a fact is our inability to reconcile and reunited – two impeding factors of development, which we have brought into the New Year.
Being very cognizant of the fact we are God’s own creation and that He will always avail to us the continuous opportunities to utilize to achieve our goals as a people, it also behooves us as a people to the “take the first step for Him to add the rest”.
Reconciliation, unity, development and progress in our situation as Liberians must match our love for each other, as well as our love for our country – Liberia.
But as practically seen, the gap – as it relates to reconciliation and unity, remains wide, still with the available opportunities provided by the Almighty, to close same if we so wish.
While we join the President in admonishing our compatriots to take heed that above all our diverse views and political debates, sometimes even political bickering, to allow a spirit of tolerance and patriotism to prevail, it is also our responsibility to ensure that as leaders and people, we exercise such tolerance and patriotism from the bottom of our hearts and not just mere lip-service as we have experienced over the years without any genuine reconciliation, unity and development.
Our success is only realizable if and only if our homes, neighborhoods, communities, ministries, autonomous bureau and agencies, commissions and the greater Liberian society can co-exist with true care, love and openness in our daily interactions and transactions. It is no secret that the factors mentioned are indeed responsible for the growth and development of other nations the world-over, including Ghana and the United States of America.
And until we as a people do away with ‘back-biting/gossips, under-minding, destructive jealousies and other forms of hatred in this New Year, reconciliation, unity, development and progress will continuous to remain just an unrealizable dream.
To realize opur New Year’s dream as advanced by the President, in her New Tear Message, all of the anti-progress factors mentioned earlier must be eliminated.