Marketers at the Dualla area on the Gbarnga-Ganta High-way have launched an appeal to President George Manneh Weah to dismiss Gbarnga City Mayor Lucia Herbert with immediate effect.The marketers, many of whom are street sellers told NewDawn’s Bong County correspondent that Mayor Herbert doesn’t have the pedigree to maintain the job.
They are claiming that Mayor Herbert’s leadership style at the Gbarnga City Corporation is grievous and onerous.According to them, Mayor Herbert doesn’t dialogue with them whenever she wants to take action concerning a specific place they should sell.
Instead, they claim that she only gets to them out of surprise and destroys their businesses.
The local marketers referenced Thursday, 25 October, the same day President Weah arrived in the County, as one of the days they will never forget about in their lives.According to them, Mayor Herbert went at their selling place at 10:30 PM and allegedly wasted all of their goods including fishes, rice, oil and even dry goods that they were selling.
“Madam Herbert who did not give us any notice to stop selling here came here and wasted all of our markets and we are calling on the President to let him know that this is not the first time for this City Mayor to treat us like this. We want her sacked,” Jerry Gbartawee, one of the marketers told this paper.
He says the action of the Gbarnga City Mayor is not fine, adding that they are struggling to survive and send their children to school by selling these goods.“Since the President appointed this Mayor, we have not seen anything tangible that she has done. She only obstructs peaceful citizens, especially local business people,” he continues.
He warns that local marketers will take drastic action against the Gbarnga City Mayor if the President doesn’t listen to their cry.Annieta Newon Bea, another Spokesperson of the aggrieved marketers is claiming more than eight thousand Liberian Dollars as damage from the City Mayor’s action.
Annieta says she only depends on selling foodstuff to help send her siblings to school, alleging that Mayor Herbert wasted these goods.“My mother even went off when the Mayor wasted my business because that’s the only thing we’re depending on to eat and pay tuition,” Annieta adds.
“Up to now, my mother is still at the hospital because she was taken there by some of my friends during the situation,” Annieta sorrowfully explains.She says she wants the City Mayor to pay for her market within a week, and the President should have Mayor Herbert dismissed immediately.
When contacted by our correspondent, Gbarnga City Mayor Lucia Herbert stated that she has over the past told the marketers to stop selling at the interception but they have not listened to her.“My office has been telling them to leave that place but they have not listened. And when they are selling at the junction, it obstructs the traffic which is very bad,” the Mayor says.
“Since they refused to listen, nothing else I would do but to take action” Herbert adds.She boastfully states that whether the marketers’ goods got damaged in the process or not, she does not care about anything.Her response has caused lots of people to make comments on the issues in Gbarnga with many of the citizens accusing her of not being a good leader.Nukai Kpangbai, a human right advocate argues that the Mayor has no right to destroy their markets, saying she could seize them.
By Joseph Titus Yekeryan in Bong–Edited by Winston W. Parley