Across social media, Liberians are salivating at what Ghana was able to accomplish with its Year of Return tourism push. The Ghana Tourism Authority branded its campaign as a “major landmark spiritual and birth-right journey inviting the Global African family, home and abroad, to mark 400 years of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans in Jamestown, Virginia.”
Much of what is occurring in Liberia today is very evocative of the period between 1869 and 1872. The 1869 election pitted the Republicans against the newly formed and insurgent (True) Whigs. Liberia was still a fairly new experiment, but a marvel in terms of black governance. The Republicans had been in power for 22 years. As always, parties that stay long in power tend to become entrenched and detached from reality.
Have you ever wondered what is really wrong with Liberia? Why is it that Africa’s oldest republic is always stuck in corruption, ritualistic killings, impassable roads, excessive salaries of lawmakers and officials, skyrocketing unemployment, terrible economic mess and always relying on international partners for everything?
Conscripting persons into the Sande society and forcibly performing Female Genital Mutilation – a bodily injury – against their will violates their freedom of will and movement enshrined in the constitution.
Citizens of Liberia, in their collectivity – small and large – hold the sacred right to demand the removal of their leaders without being accused of treason.
There are two ways in which a president can be removed from office in a democracy like ours. The first is by popular vote via an election, and the second is through impeachment by the people’s representatives. The former has to do with policies or the lack thereof, while the latter has to do with misconduct.
Liberia is still wiping off the dust from the more than 14 years of uncivil war. The years of bloodbath destroyed the entire nation’s economy and is still having its toll today – this is why a political machination in the form of the ‘Weah Step Down Campaign’ that seeks to dethrone a government is frightening.
I was in Liberia this past summer to spend my vacation and conduct research. Prior to making the trip, I felt excited and anxious. I hadn’t been back home to reconnect with my family and my friends for an entire year. But apart from reconnecting with loved ones, I was most excited about executing plans I had worked on over the past year.