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LOOKING INSIDE FROM OUTSIDE – Opposition and the Ruling Party

It’s left just little over one year now for Liberians at home to decide their next course of action, as to determining who should be their next President, Representatives or junior Senators in the 2011 general and presidential elections.

While the ruling Unity Party has had its weaknesses in terms of a strong leadership and maintaining its structures in Rural Liberia despite the availability of the financial resources, the Liberian opposition has been a complete disappointment in the eyes of many well-meaning Liberians.

Usually, in any civilized political environment, the opposition will always capitalize on the weaknesses of the ruling party (as it has been with the Unity Party just until now following the so-called Ganta Convention) to score political capitals in certain areas of development ahead of any election.

But for Liberian opposition political parties, unnecessary condemnations continue to characterize their activities (something which the ruling party has not even been able to take advantage of).

Except for the numerous news conferences, talk show appearances, issuance of press releases and a few news-making events in Monrovia, nothing is felt in the rest of Liberia as a mark of seriousness on the part of our opposition political parties.

Just no presence, no activities and least to say party structures or offices in the various counties and districts of Liberia are visible since the general and presidential elections of 2005, yet still they call themselves opposition political parties.

Of course, they may challenge this argument on grounds of logistics and other economic constraints. And the response could be “that’s no excuse for any real and registered political party…”

And may I also excuse Bishop George Kiadii of the National Vision Party  who would also raise a biter argument against this article , if I did not mention that at least I have seen in Zwedru, Cape Palmas, Ganta, and Gbarnga on a number of occasions co-incidentally on political missions.

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But the fact remains that our opposition political parties only wait for a year or two to the national political race to begin showing up, to claim interest in or love for their people, something which may not “hold water” this time.

As well-meaning Liberians and political observers, some of us had thought that the opposition would have taken advantage of the “political mess” instigated by the “cash politics” being propelled by the ruling party administration in Liberia, to awaken the consciences of our people in Rural Liberia.

Even a quarter of the thousands or millions of United States Dollars used for campaign purposes during the 2005 general and presidential elections would have done this job through mini rallies, radio interactions and exchanges between them and rural dwellers and other public relations activities at least from 2007 to now mainly in Rural Liberia.

It would be very foolhardy for any Liberian politician to harbor the belief that Liberians in Rural Liberia would require them to dish out huge cash if they ever visited them. It’s just a matter of interacting with the ordinary grass rooters for the past years to continue to maintain the political relationship, most especially in difficult times.

For those of us who regularly visit Rural Liberia and interact with those there, no amount of rhetoric or “sugar-coating” statements, we believe, will easily negate the misgivings of the people, owing to their disappointment in our so-called politicians.

Despite the reconstruction and rehabilitation of our infrastructures, including the “small light”, the streets of Monrovia and its environs and a few development efforts by the ruling party administration, the socio-economic life of majority of Liberians in some parts of Monrovia and its environs, as well as Rural Liberia continues to be bleak.

For example, one out of every five market women at Red-light, Duala, Marry-Go-Round and Jorken Town Markets will complain of hardship if one did a sample survey, even though efforts are in full swing to reduce poverty.

This is just one of the many instances politicians need to really understand to engage the Liberian people in terms of practical politics, but unfortunately, they spend time on reacting to useless issues in Monrovia such as “Ellen declaring intention for second term.”Nonsense!

Again, when our politicians should extensively be “doing their home work” everywhere in this country targeted at forming a very strong and sincere political force, in the wake of the new and “Jessibellious” political variables being infused into the political ball game by the Political Leader of the Unity Party, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, they continue to bluff into a so-called “Democratic Alliance”, misbelieving that the Almighty God will still anoint them to be President of Liberia as they claimed in 2005. And that was in total violation of God’s second commandment to Moses for mankind, instructing that His name must not be used in vein. To be continued.

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