‘Remove youths from the ghetto’
--Former Senator Ballout urges Weah
By Lewis S. Teh
Former Maryland County Senator John Ballout has called on President George Manneh Weah to rescue the country’s youthful population from drugs.
Serving as spokesperson for a group of civil society organizations against illicit drugs, Mr. Ballout urged President Weah to look back at the youthful population that voted for him and institute measures that will rescue them.
“It’s time for political actors including President Weah to graduate from being mere politicians to statesmen by looking back at our youthful population and removing them from the ghetto,” said Mr. Ballout.
According to him, mere politicians nowadays do things to get re-election, but statesmen and women do things in the interest of the next generation, even if they don’t win.
The CSOs organizations against illicit drugs under the banner ‘We the People’ recently commanded the Liberian government through the Legislature for the passage of the drugs law making it a non-bailable offense.
However, former Senator Ballout who is seeking a return to the Liberian Senate has lauded the government for the drug law.
He said the lawmakers’ decision was laudable and welcoming to have passed into law an Act making drugs a non-bailable offense in the country.
“We will celebrate and we commend all of those lawmakers for their citizens’ efforts, but the fight against drugs goes beyond the passage of this law,” Ballout said.
“Today every Liberian says Liberia has good laws and policies but lacks implementation. The fight against drugs can’t fall victim to this thought and complacency,” he warned.
According to him, the fight against drugs has to be treated a little bit differently because the children in the next generation rely on the efforts of those in charge today.
He lamented that the number of children in various ghettos has increased since this government came to power, and these are the same people that brought this government to power.
” Today you have a good opportunity to score political points by removing these children from the ghetto,” Ballout said.
He called on President Weah to capitalize on the just-passed drugs law, urging him to finance, and strengthen the Liberia Drugs Enforcement Agency (LDEA).
He believes that no citizen will complain if the government puts a million dollars into drug rehabilitation centers.