"Liberians need a form of relief from the people who have terrorized their country for the past 25 years and dehumanized the population" – Bernard Gbayee Goah
By Bernard Gbayee Goah
President, Operation We Care for Liberia
They were wrong…, Liberians were wrong, and are still wrong for equating the Absence of War in Liberia with peace. They’ve confused the two, and their peace-formula has now become a nightmare, and complete recipe for disaster.
While the absence of war in Liberia created a state of intense excitement amongst its war-weary citizens, peace has yet to be achieved. The internationally backed negotiated ceasefire between the government of former President Charles Taylor on the one hand, and MODEL and LURD force on the other hand has been maintained. But there has been no meaningful action on the part of Liberians themselves to prevent the resumption of hostilities.
Unlike Sierra Leone, Rwanda and other countries where in the post-conflict period maximum attention has been given to tackling the root causes of the violence in order to ensure deterrence; Liberia, on the other hand, has done just the opposite. Those who orchestrated the mayhem are now ruling the country and dictating the pace of reconciliation. This is no way to restore peace following a brutal war where so many civilians were murdered and almost the entire population uprooted.
In view of the above, it is deceptive on the part of anyone to say Liberia is peaceful, because determinants of a peaceful society do not exist in Liberia. Anyone who propagates such information is full of illusion, and must be persuaded to abandon it. To say Liberia is peaceful is to further delay Liberia’s recovery process.
How could we consider ourselves intelligent beings, and yet hold the view that there is peace in Liberia when currently thousands of heavily armed international peacekeeping troops are deployed across the country with no fixed date for their departure?
How could we consider ourselves intelligent beings, and yet hold the view that there is peace in Liberia when the country’s health system is a complete mess?
Every single Liberian I have talked to say they want peace, and they want it now, but with agents of war and death currently holding the reins of power, they don’t see peace returning to Liberia soon.
Even right now, while the Ebola virus is killing Liberians at an exponential rate, these very agents of death are doing everything in their power, at all cost, and in any form, to be elected in the country’s upcoming senatorial elections of 2014.
But that is not all; some of them will also attempt to run for the presidency in 2017. Should they succeed in wining, their sole intention is to protect the status quo, and a return to business as usual. This, we must not allow to happen.