Liberians will be glued to their radios and television sets tomorrow to listen to the orator of the country’s 175th Independence Day celebration.
While the government is spreading her profile, others have already begun to dismiss what government propagandists have written about her.
Mawine Diggs is the Minister of Commerce and a confidante of the Liberian President. She rarely sits in the office, but moves just everywhere the president goes.
This why some Liberians laughed out loud when they heard Liberian President George Weah named her as the Orator of Liberia’s 175th Independence celebration.
Besides being an ardent supporter of the Liberian leader, she’s an underperformer in her job.
Critics considered her inept, ineffective, and lacking humanity as the minister of commerce. Her alleged humiliation of some co-workers and civil servants assigned to her ministry makes her appointment even more despicable, according to some political analysts.
This is what makes it very interesting to hear what she will say in her oration tomorrow, Liberia’s Independence Day.
One opposition figure who did not hide his contempt about Commerce Minister Mawine Diggs appointment as the orator is former deputy information minister during the administration of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf administration, Robert Moncio Kpadeh, who says Diggs is an avowed Weah adherent and CDC strong woman. Mr. Kpadeh believes national orators must have nerves and must be able to speak the truth.
But in the case of Madam Diggs, Mr. Kpadeh thinks it’s obvious you don’t expect her to call out President Weah and slam bad governance, rampant corruption, and other faux pas of the regime.
Can she, in her speech, muster the courage and temerity to scream at the huge quantum of malfeasance obtained in her own government? He asked.
“Can she, in her speech, rebuke Minister Samuel D. Tweah for messing with the National Road Fund and the famous US$25M Mop Up funding? Of course No! And this is the singular intention of choosing a Weah’s surrogate to do the honor”, he said in a post on his Facebook.
He considers constructive criticism as one of the essential tenants of a vibrant democracy. Unfortunately, notwithstanding, he indicated that President George Weah and his camp followers are less tolerant of fierce criticism; adding that bold criticism scares them to the bone marrow.
According to him, this is the reason why the Liberian leader would often prefer a surrogate and a staunch member of the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) to serve as the National Orator of the Independence Day celebration.
Kpadeh noted that since the last experience with Nobel Laureate Leymah Gbowee who gave a firing national oration that allegedly red the eyes of pres. Weah, it seems the President and his supporters are no longer willing to take the risk with any other person out of his rank especially as the regime allegedly nears its twilight.
“Governance can only improve and democracy can only get vibrant when we allow the divergence of views and tolerate dissents. The CDC criticized the Ellen-led administration for 12 unbroken years and it was tolerated, and some of its leaders were given jobs in the administration. Now it is in power, it resents criticism and has blacklisted its fierce critics as enemies of the State-vowing to make life difficult for them economically”, he said.
The former government official stated that Minister Diggs has good grammar control and fine reading skills, and therefore expects a well-delivered speech but with content fraught and saddled with sweet praises to caress Weah’s bloated ego.
Kpadeh concluded that Diggs’ oration will be more of a campaign speech to feed the base with “red meat” and nothing more. And of course, he pointed out, “The room will be jammed filled with party zealots to cheer her up.”
Madam Diggs presides over the ministry of commerce at a time prices of essential commodities are skyrocketing; and there is fear of potential scarcity of very important imports.