Electioneering activities are definitively different from democratic governance. Electioneering moments often generates unusual excitements. These excitements can sometimes lead to endless political festivals, sudden social abuses with voters being held psychologically hostage and overwhelmingly delusional on issues of vital importance. Democratic governance, on the other hand, calls for critical thoughts, sober reflections, strategic decision making, assessment of global and bilateral issues, and most importantly, understanding the inner working of Liberia’s constitution, regional policies and politics, and the ramification associated with agreements, deals and complex national and international contracts. It would also include the understanding of the holistic domestic policies and issues, foreign affairs, military, economic globalization, external and internal security matters, just to name a few.
Democratic governance is pivotal but highly keen to the ears of the International community. It is a fundamental yardstick used by the International bodies to determine whether an elected president is either autocratic, authoritarian, visionary, transformational; socialist/communist, liberal democrat, conservative Democrat, a dictator or a Democrat. While it is evident that democratic elections are not the same as democratic governance, in the same token, not all democratically elected presidents are democratically capable of fulfilling the huge demand of a comprehensive democratic governance which is perhaps one of the hardest components in democratic dispensation after elections are held peacefully in earnest.
A duly elected democratic president like President-elect Weah has two fundamental daunting tasks to fulfill during his ensuing presidency. The first daunting task revolves around what is called the president’s persona deportment that speaks to the characterization of his presidency. The second daunting task revolves around the International community’s enormous democratic expectations of a democratically elected president like President-elect Weah.
The first daunting task of President-elect Weah within the scope of the Executive Manson is for (President-elect Weah) him to be de-emotional; with good listening ears; should be slow to speak; not fast in announcing very important decisions; should be cordial to fellow Liberians; must be policy oriented; well-informed; be respectful to diplomats; control of anger management; be de-materialistic; not flamboyance; not womanizing; have a critical and sober mind; should do away with alcoholic beverages; be a non-smoker; have a discerning spirit to understand Liberian feelings, actions and body language; respect and honors the Liberian constitution; honor and respects elders of Liberia; be family oriented; make the First lady industrial with kids and women programs; be at work on time; reject gifts and donations from foreigners/Lebanese; don’t use birthday to generate wealth; don’t give Liberian jobs to foreigners, when there are qualified Liberians to be employed; don’t force your views on Liberians who worked in the Executive Manson; don’t be forceful and dictatorial as President; uphold ethical standards; be decent and forthright; don’t be easily carried away by fantasy such as lies and deceits; don’t react violently to rumors about your life style, family or something concerning your children; always be calmed in the midst of unfounded rumors; don’t be panicking or formable over little, little things; don’t interfere with the nation’s Justice Ministry; don’t force the Justice Minister to protect your office or family interests; don’t demand loyalty from the Courts and or the security apparatus or the Justice Minister; don’t misuse presidential motorcade by simply parading Monrovia town without any significant purpose; listen to your advisors patiently and keenly; do away with nepotism and tribalism;
avoid using the presidency to purchase personal properties; don’t receive cuts and bribes that will affect the growth and development of Liberia; discipline your Ministers who are constantly begging Lebanese and other Foreigners for money to eat, to build their houses or send their children to school; unite the nation by having a peace, unity and reconciliation conference in each county with political parties; there should be no witch-hunting; desist from putting Liberian behind bars unjustly without due process; engage the press every six-months; honor the press every year; travel with members of the Liberian press within and outside of Liberia; don’t pick and choose which press to deal with, and which press not to deal with; deal with the press on an equal note; protect the sovereignty of the Press; don’t shout down press houses; persecute corrupt officials through Courts of competent jurisdictions; protect all policies that will fight against terrorisms at home and abroad; don’t cite Journalists for questioning, but rather go through the Courts; protect the lives of Liberian Journalists abroad who might be in trouble; give the Information Ministry free hands to function; do away with direct and indirect political intimidations of opponents; be tolerance to news stories, features and commentaries from the media; allocate fund for the growth and development of the Press Union of Liberia to be effective; don’t practice divide and rule game with the media; be media friendly and courteous; protect the rights and dignity of women and children in Liberia; investigate the death of any Liberian who may die mysteriously and his/her body dumped by the road side. The government should do all it takes to bring the murderer(s) to Justice; investigate women brutality and child abuses; investigate men who combat their wives at home etc., etc.
The second daunting task will include but not limited to what the International community expects of President-elect Weah. The International community will expect President-elect Weah to enforce good democratic governance at all cost; by upholding the freedom of the Press, the protection of civil society institutions; the protection of rule of law and law and order, defends student struggle; respects the independence of the Judiciary; uphold human and religious rights of all Liberians and Foreigners; and most importantly to ensure transparency, accountability and probity at all sectors of his government as long as he remains President of the Republic of Liberia etc., etc.
The President-elect Weah will need to be proactive in supporting America’s Foreign policies overseas. He should have critical thoughts to engage other institutions such as the African Union and ECOWAS etc., etc. President-elect Weah has to ensure that accountability and transparency be seen in practical terms, not in theory. This need to be upheld by the president-elect Weah in order to win the political confidence of the International community especially the United States of America, European nations, China, International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the other relevant International donor institutions that will support the government of the president-elect. But he has to play his part by enforcing the virtues of good democratic governance in Liberia that will be absolutely different from the outgoing President Sirleaf’s form of democratic governance within the last painstaking 12-years.