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Unification Day is formality

--Muslim Cleric says

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Liberia’s Grand Mufti Sheikh Abubakar Sumaworo says the National Unification Day which passed by Legislature in 1960 is just for formality, arguing that it is President George Manneh Weah that is now fighting for real unification through his road projects.

Expressing his thought about the national holiday Saturday, 19 January in Monrovia, Sheikh Sumaworo says if Grand Gedeh and Lofa people are not able to come to Monrovia due to the [deplorable] condition of the road, it does not demonstrate real unification.

“So George Manneh Weah is the one that makes the real unification of Liberia, not the one that happened” in [1960],” he said at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium (ATS) in Monrovia when the Muslim Community gathered to pray and thank Allah for President Weah’s first one year of rule.

Each year on 14 May Liberians, in observance of an Act of Legislature, celebrate National Unification Day which is also sometimes referred to as “Integration Day”.The day is observed in an effort to seek improved relations between the descendants of freed American slaves and native Liberians.

National Unification Day was declared a public holiday here in 1960 to honour the historic change brought about by the late Liberian President William V.S. Tubman when he ended the segregation between the natives and the Freed American slaves and granted voting rights to all Liberians in 1944.

Though this right is still observed today and all Liberians can even compete for public offices, Sheikh Sumaworo however believes that lack of access to Monrovia on the basis of lack of roads does not portray unification among Liberians.He says President Weah is the one that is fighting for the unification of the country.

Notwithstanding, Sheikh Sumaworo appeals to the Muslim Community here to be productive and not destructive.“We should not make ourselves harmful. We should try to make ourselves useful,” Sheikh Sumaworo says,” adding that “You the Muslims” [tell] your sons to be united.

He offered prayers at the Stadium, asking Allah to grant President George Manneh Weah wisdom and ability to lead Liberia.Meanwhile, Sheikh Sumaworo says he wants the Liberian Government to assign Liberians that were educated in Arabic countries to diplomatic missions in the Arabic countries.

For his part, the President Weah’s Religious Advisor Rev. Emmanuel Logan expresses confidence that President Weah’s government will succeed hundred percent because the religious community is in support and is offering prayers for God’s direction.

According to him, President Weah told his Minister of State for Presidential Affairs Nathaniel Falo McGill that Government will not have program or other activities at the end of its first year in power, but mandated that the religious community come together and give Allah thanks for the one year that the Lord has taken “us” through.

Rev. Logan expresses confidence that God will lead President Weah and the government through successfully in the second year of the administration.He invites Muslims to the official opening of President Weah’s Church on Sunday, 19 January to fellowship together.

He enjoins the Muslims and other religious groups to continue to pray for Liberia’s peace.Earlier, Sheikh Ali Krayee said it is a honor for the Muslims to have assembled at the ATS to offer prayers and thanks to Allah for the government and President Weah.

He notes that one someone asks you to pray for them, they have given you a responsibility.He says you cannot say you don’t like them or they are not the right person, adding that “we are” obliged to pray for government.According to him, if the government fails, Liberia fails and the children here will suffer.At the stadium were scores of Imams, Muslim youths, elders and students who had gathered to say thanks to Allah for President Weah and his government’s one year in office.

By Emmanuel Mondaye-Edited by Winston W. Parley

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