By Lincoln G. Peters
Catholic prelate Rev. Father McDonald W. Nah says Liberia’s democracy is not guaranteed because the government has allegedly failed to focus on the bread-and-butter issues here.
During a panel discussion organized by the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL) Tuesday, 7 February 2023, Rev. Nah said the government has deviated from its social contract to manage, protect and provide for the wellbeing of its citizens.
“In all sincerity, it will be a challenge to sustain this democracy if we don’t make serious sacrifices from our policymakers,” said Rev. Nah, National Director of the National Commission for Justice and Caritas.
“To be very frank with you, this democracy, Liberia’s democracy is not guaranteed. We are working in the different communities in this country, the young people don’t have jobs,” he said further.
As part of activities leading to the celebration of this year’s Armed Forces Day, the AFL organized the forum Tuesday at the Monrovia City Hall on the topic: “Fostering Effective Stakeholders Engagement for Sustainable Democracy.’’
He cautioned that the police and the army should not be expected to just perform miracles.
The Catholic prelate stated that elections are coming and people are calling for prayers for the election to be violence-free.
“But, people are tired of this pretense that God somehow will perform something. People are hungry and tired because there is no opportunity,’’ he noted.
According to Rev. Nah, the 14 years of civil war that Liberia fought was the result of dissatisfaction.
He continued that history informed him that people were angry because of inequality and today, the same things are seen happening.
He wondered if three years from now, those that will be in the Legislature will sit down again and watch Firestone operate without building one factory.
“We have to negotiate for us to get something built here and shipped outside,” Rev. Nah suggested.
He argued that democracy can only be sustained and maintained by the army and the police if the policymakers in Liberia can prioritize and make sacrifices that will benefit the people in general.
If that is not done to look at the lives of the Liberian people, he warned, this democracy can’t be maintained.
“To sustain this democracy, we have to change something. As much as possible, let’s do what we can in terms of the policymakers to sacrifice a lot,” he pleaded.
“I just don’t understand why people in miniseries are getting so much and the securities are not. We are at the mercy of people who might get angry,” he warned.
The Catholic prelate raised a question as to how democracy can be maintained if the police and the army do not have the logistics.