By Lincoln G. Peters
President George Manneh Weah through the Minister of State for Presidential Affairs Nathaniel F. McGill over the weekend presented the sum of US$100,000 to fire victims of the Waterside community as a way of giving them hope to begin a new journey.
“Let me convey this special message to you, that this gesture is President George Weah’s personal contribution towards every one of you that were affected recently by the fire incident in Waterside,” said Mr. McGill in an impromptu press conference on 27 August 2021 at the Monrovia City Corporation (MCC) headquarters.
He explained that the humanitarian gesture was a promise fulfilled by the president following his visit thereafter the fire incident during which he said he would have made his personal contribution of US$100, 000.
“Having said that, Mr. Mayor Jefferson Tamba Koijee, I want to present the sum of 100,000 United States dollars on behalf of the President of the Republic of Liberia George Manneh Weah who has sent me to do this for him as a promise fulfilled,” said Mr. McGill.
McGill added that President Weah’s personal gesture is intended to provide opportunities for the affected Waterside fire victims as they begin a new life journey.
He explained that the money is to be used by the Waterside fire victims for its intended purpose, noting that the President is taking measures to prevent fire disasters across the country.
The Minister of State for Presidential Affairs presented the money to Mayor Koijee for onward presentation to the affected victims who were in attendance at the program.
The program was graced by the leaders of the fire victims including James R. Sackie, head of large businesses; Isaiah K. Lincoln, 6508 Community chairman; Emmanuel Nimely, Chairman, Petit Traders; Ms. Assunta Wleh, fire victim and Mr. Mohammed Mojah Barry, head of the fire victims and President of the Fula Business Association of Liberia.
Also at the program were Montserrado County Electoral District #9 Representative Frank Saah Foko, and Disaster Management Agency Executive Director Henry O. Williams.
Recently, a tanker exploded in the area and set several homes ablaze, and wounded eight persons. No death was reported after the incident, but properties and businesses worth millions of dollars were destroyed when a fuel tanker believed to belong to Aminata and Sons exploded on Friday, 13 August 2021.
According to an eyewitness account, at about 5 pm on the day of the incident, the tanker moving on Front Street experienced a severe brake failure, lost control, and somersaulted down the street towards Waterside. It exploded in flames and affected homes and businesses in the area.
One of the victims who spoke to journalists but did not want to be named, narrated that it was the fifth incident in that area on Front Street. The eyewitness said eight wounded persons were rushed to hospitals after the incident.
Receiving the cash donation from Mr. McGill, Mayor Koijee expressed excitement, saying he is not surprised at the gesture of President Weah on grounds that he is “a talk and do” leader.
According to Mayor Koijee, President Weah is a man of his words and cares so much for his citizens, and that it is not his wish to see any citizen suffer.
“I can assure that within in time and with this little token wisely used, your brokenness and losses will be healed in the fullness of time”, Koijee told the victims.
At the same time, he called on Aminata and Sons to begin to do the honorable thing as it has reportedly promised, shifting responsibility on the petrol trade group for all the difficulties that the fire victims down Waterside are going through.
Meanwhile, Mayor Koijee urged the fire victims to use the cash wisely and to distribute it properly in order to avoid noise among them.
The president of the Fula Business Community and head of the fire victims, Mr. Mohammed Mojah Barry, said that they are going to use the money wisely and make sure there will be no noise among them in the distribution of the cash.
“We the five leaders of the affected fire victims of Waterside, ably represented here by leaders of the community, petty trader, business community, injured victims want to say thank you to the Office of the President and the Mayor for their great help toward the business community,” said Mr. Barry.
“Their contribution to us the fire victims and businesses are overwhelming and it shows that they love us and are willing to help Liberian businesses,” he added. https://thenewdawnliberia.com/liberia-government-tells-aminata-sons-to-take-responsibility-for-weekend-fire-disaster/–Edited by Winston W. Parley
By Lincoln G. Peters