President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, on Tuesday, September 17, 2013, announced the resignation of the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the National Oil Company of Liberia or NOCAL, Mr. Robert Sirleaf. Not only did Mr. Sirleaf relinquish the post of Chairman of the NOCAL Board, but he also resigned as Senior Advisor to the President of Liberia, his mother.
President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, briefing the nation Tuesday at the Ministry of Information, having completed his mission, she accepted with fond memories the resignation of Mr. Robert Sirleaf from both his roles as Chairman of the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL) and her Senior Advisor. The announcement of the resignation of the NOCAL Board Chairman by the President, thereafter, immediately became and continues to be the main topical issue in the media and several quarters of the Liberian society.
While some Liberians are hailing Mr. Robert Sirleaf not only for his stewardship at NOCAL and his humanitarian social works in various communities in and around Monrovia, others continue to criticize his resignation as untimely or belated, calling for his audit. In as much as the concerns of critics of Mr. Sirleaf’s Chairmanship and resignation as NOCAL Board Chair may be genuine, the need to divorce sentiments from this matter must also be emphasized.
Despite being son of the President of Liberia, Robert Sirleaf is not only a Liberia, but also qualified to serve in any capacity to guide the process of governance and national development. It is no secret that it is not only in the Executive Branch of Government that intimate families of leaders serve; in the Liberian Legislature and Judiciary, immediate relatives of top officials also work with fabulous salaries and benefits. It is further worst in non-government organizations and other private institutions in the country.
As we criticize or accuse President Sirleaf of nepotism, it is also important to understand that nepotism is only a reality when those covered by the term are not qualified and non-Liberians.
Moreover, we must also begin to publicly speak about nepotism not only in the Executive Branch of Government, but also in the Legislature, Judiciary, as well as non-government organizations, etc., etc. Mr. Robert Sirleaf has already played his part and left scene into privacy; our Legislators, probably upon their return in January, must begin to be more realistic and independent executing their duties and functions in the interest of the people of Liberia.
Criticizing Mr. Sirleaf is just very un-necessary and meaningless at this point in time; our concern as a people must be to rise up above gullibility and begin to look at issues from a more logical perspective and not on the basis of sentiments.