This week I was inspired by a group on the internet whose vision, mission, goals, purpose and objectives for Mama Liberia touched me SO much that I thought to write this piece as a way of helping cast vision that would shed light as well as make recommendations for Liberia’s unity, growth and development. I also trust that government, the Peace Commission and every single Liberian will see this document as a useful tool for Liberia’s reconciliation process.
Fellow Liberians, have you ever taken notice that Liberians are versatile and has gifts and talents that are SO unique?
I went to the Ivory Coast and saw Liberians spoke French as well as dance their music and sang their songs so well that one would think they are Ivoirians. I saw the same in Nigeria and in Ghana.
Liberians are smart and brilliant. Liberians are fast thinkers and has great gifts and talents. Liberians are among the friendliest people in Africa and there is nothing like Liberian hospitality. But why Liberia is still lagging behind and is having troubles and continuous woes and/or problems and have not been able to utilize the talents and gifts to translate them into meaningful programs and/projects that will benefit Mama Liberia? Why has Liberia not experience meaningful progress even since after we have had two successful elections?
During my brief stay in Nigeria I notice a few group of Liberians that belong to some of the tribes in this country. When an individual or family members left Nigeria for a visit and subsequently return to Nigeria after they have spent a week or month, they would say they are from home and if they should begin to explain their trip’s experience it would become clear that Liberia was not that home. It was another country. This became a routine amongst those groups.
I remember one group particularly that had several young Liberians, as they claimed to be known, each one of them had on their commercial motorcycle another country’s flag and yet they were known to be Liberians and were benefiting from every program that was intended for Liberians including the resettlement program. And yes, many indeed benefited.
If the Lonestar, Liberia’s soccer team, was to play a soccer match there would be little or no optimism found among members of those groups and if Liberia lost the match it was continual insults to the players and the country until they left the DSTv hall. But if it was the countries which they supported lost the match there would be weeping until the morning hours, and if they did win there would be continuous celebration up until the next morning. Liberia was seen as less important to the above groups and other Liberians took notice of the way the above groups went about doing things and of course this became a usual discussion.
Among us today there is truly a lack of unity and oneness of purpose and a lack of a sense of community, and we need to place Liberia first and foremost in our hearts and daily lives; for it is only by this that we can move Liberia forward. Even though many may attribute the lack of unity to the just ended civil war, the truth is that Liberia as a small country has too many divisions amongst its people coupled with differences of opinions. There seems to be no national vision for Liberia and the national agenda for Liberia’s development has been dashed leaving Liberians with little hope, fragile peace and little development after the trauma of SO much loss.
It is important for us to know also, as a people and country, that our past is over and that Liberia is the only country we have. We must all endeavor to make Liberia a better place for our children and our children’s children. We must, therefore, develop a plan for peace, growth and prosperity as well as a strategy for making that plan a reality. The challenge is for Liberians to be active at every level of the development process – from government to the village. It must include active participation in the governance of our country.
We must use every resource at our disposal to meeting development needs. We must love and have a heart for this country. We must begin to motivate each other, take responsibility and to share recognition for achievements and failures. We must stop playing the blame game – blaming others and not wanting to take responsibility. We must cease to be spectators and become active participants in the struggle to make Liberia a better place. It is Liberians that will have to become leaders in the struggle-not the UN or the US.
Building this country does not rest on one person, a group or a political party. It will take the combine efforts of each and every Liberian to rebuild this country and to make it a better place for all. Keep destroying Liberia for you have no other country but Liberia. Keep going ahead with your plot and wicket scheme against Liberia and tomorrow you will have no where to call home if Liberia is no more. Liberians, let us think twice.
(Chealy Brown Dennis is a motivational speaker and offers training in leadership, business development, creative sales and marketing, strategic planning and team building. He also offers workbooks, on-location and train-the-trainer formats for leaders, managers, businesses and organizations. He can be contacted through email at: email@example.com or on phone at: 0886-264-611 or 0776545394)