A Patriot’s Diary
With Ekena Nyankun Juahgbe-Droh Wesley
If the flowery language, ambitious pronouncements and the somewhat confident utterances of politicians during campaigns were anything to go by, the earth would be inundated with amazing wonders. President-elect, Joseph Nyuma Baokai was Vice President for 12 years in the small West African nation. Couldn’t that have happened?
Don’t prejudge President-elect Joe Boakai! William R. Tolbert was Vice President for 27 years, but little did we know that an enterprising and progressive leader was being shielded by a system of Shad Tubman’s preponderance. Was it that President-elect, Joe Boakai’s former boss seemed not to be interested in his ideas? The Vice President, constitutionally “shall assist the President.” If that doesn’t make a point, let’s hover over another debate in the not-too-distant future.
Politicians, during campaigns, tell the electorates what they want to hear. The sphere of political governance is entirely a different ball game. Surely, politicians would tell the people they’ll build bridges where there are no rivers amid applause. Do the masses seem to get it? Hmmm!
When President-elect, Joe Boakai made the politically nerving determination that in his first 100 days, no car would be stuck in the mud, two things occurred to Liberians. A section of Liberians, for whatever the reason, doubted him. Perhaps in their thought, this is not achievable because it has happened since 1847.
They might have been dogged by the trappings of hesitation given the huge shopping list on the national plate and those resigned to the indifference that Boakai’s commitment is beyond achievability. Unarguably, that section of Liberians has the right to think and believe as their own reasons tell them.
Conversely, there’s a Liberian parlance that “If a blind man says he will fling a pebble at you, he already has one concealed somewhere.” President-elect, Boakai has been around for some time. He supposedly knows what he’s talking about. This is hard time to “talk the talk; and walk the walk…”
Mind you, the single largest part of Liberia is consumed by inaccessibility due to either nonexistent road network or the existing ones are seemingly impassable to say the least. On top of it all, George Weah and his gang crazily mismanaged the country.
Donor projects (road) already earmarked for implementation were apparently still prioritized. Let’s we forget, Weah and his loyalist tried to own projects they knew absolutely nothing about. But Weah will be remembered for a couple of Sports facilities across Monrovia’s neighborhoods. Weah ultimately didn’t give a damn as to whether the people had jobs or could fend for themselves.
Whether President-elect Joe Boakai’s commitment is grossly political or realistic, we needn’t hold our breadth too long given that Boakai’s inauguration is January 22, 2024 – and so the counting will begin. There could be hope judging from the euphoric mobilization of volunteers for the cleaning of Monrovia ahead Boakai’s swearing-in on Capitol Hill.
For nearly six years, Monrovia was reduced to a dent of filth due to incompetence, ineptitude and corruption. Ahead of Boakai’s inauguration, Liberians are beginning to breathe an air of sanity. In Liberia, we say, “If the Christmas would be good, you will tell from the eve.”
Beyond the Christmas, Liberians, grotesquely paralyzed due to impassable roads, are being assured by President-elect, Joseph Boakai that their vehicles will not get stuck in the mud irrespective of wherever they could be travelling.
Interestingly, Boakai has been rubbing shoulders in Washington in the last couple of days, meeting U.S. government officials, executives of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF). Tacitly capitalizing on the needed international goodwill is key for Boakai’s who told the Voice of America (VOA), that ‘agriculture, and roads’ will feature prominently on the new administration’s agenda.
Whether President-elect Joe Boakai means what he says or invariably says what he means, only time will tell whether the Rescue Leader was speaking politically or pragmatically.
Delaware County, PA
“The revolution is not an apple that falls when it is ripe. You have to make it fall. – Che Guevera