A faith-based media group, Christian Media Center says, Liberia has lost one of the leading figures of the Christian community. The Group announced the death of Bishop Sumoward Harris, long-term serving Bishop of the Lutheran Church of Liberia, which the group said has created a void in Liberia’s quest for peace and sustainable reconciliation.
The Center in a release issued Friday, February 26, 2021 recalled the legacy of the late Lutheran Bishop and noted that he was in the same class with the late Catholic Arc-bishop Michael K. Francis when it comes to the pursuit of peace and reconciliation in Liberia.
The release signed by the Center’s Executive Director, Nah Davies furthered that Bishop Harris is also the longest serving leader of the Liberia Council of Churches (LCC) and indicated that the late Lutheran prelate served the Council three times as vice president and twice as President.
The late Bishop Harris was deeply involved with the search for peace and reconciliation, and along with other faith-based leaders he should be credited with the fragile peace Liberia now enjoys. His death is a huge loss for the country, the Liberia Council of Churches, and the Lutheran Church of Liberia, the Center said in its release.
Christian Media Center is calling on the George Weah Administration to seize on the death of Bishop Harris to revive the stalled reconciliation process in the country, reminding the president and those serving with him that the peace Liberia now enjoys is fragile.
Christian Media Center says unlike his predecessor, President George Weah has the moral authority to ensure that Liberia attains lasting peace and reconciliation, two things Liberia cannot afford to ignore.
The Center said Former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is the infamous protagonist of the Liberia civil war and made it emphatically clear that her quest for power caused the loss of 250-thousand Liberian lives and the wrecking of most of the country’s infrastructure.
While in office the Media Center notes Sirleaf had no appetite for genuine reconciliation because she saw all effort at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission as an indictment on her.
The Center said a lot of documentary evidence and testimony from human witnesses who testified at the truth hearings have shown Madam Sirleaf’s complacencies in the formation, command and control of all warring parties that fought the war.
Christian Media Center emphasized that former President Sirleaf admitted to funding the war and the Liberian people will never forget her infamous comments on BBC in 1990 when she told the National Patriotic Front to flatten the Executive Mansion if it were the only means of getting the late President Samuel Doe out of power. Such comments the Center furthered, motivated the rebels to destroy everything in Liberia, according to the Center.
On the Sirleaf legacy, the Center said the genesis of current structural problems in the governance of Liberia can be attributed to former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf who presided over enormous international goodwill and debt waivers that could put Liberia on pal with Rwanda. Instead, the Former president used his children to squander the billions in donor support over the 12 years of her presidency.
The faith-based group believes bad things happened in Liberia, and the only remedy to ensure that there is no reoccurrence is to institute justice no matter who is the target.
“The blood of those Liberians that died is still crying before their creator,” the Center emphasized, calling on the Weah Administration to revisit the finding of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission report and recommendation by the Jerome Verdier-led commission a true testimony to what occurred.