With the George Weah Government now in its third year, and following uproarious political fray between the ruling party and the opposition bloc, it seems things are maturing into a responsible political space. Sporadic street protests and bellicose verbal altercations are giving way to dialogue and sensible exchange of ideas and comments. With such an amiable civil order, it looks like the ruling establishment is ready to open its arms and ears for constructive engagements with citizens, particularly critical minds, as evidenced by recent declarations coming from the much-talk-about Chief of Office Staff of the President of the Republic, Mr. Nathaniel McGill, to the effective that Government welcomes criticisms that will move Liberia forward towards sustainable peace, stability and development. The Analyst’s Rancy S. Teewia reports.
For the first two and three years of its existence, the George Weah administration had hardly let even the faintest yank go unnoticed; it would unleash spontaneous collateral volleys at the critic in retaliation as if the government or its officials were above reproach and allergic to corrections and criticisms. That ruling attitude sparked near-deadly propaganda wars between the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change on the one hand and the opposition community and civil society on the other.
It seems the Government is now coming to sobriety and maturity, letting to flow criticisms from its opponents and independent minds.
In a recent statement, Nathaniel McGill, Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, conceded that
criticisms are necessary in a democracy, for they help one to know how the public feels about certain situations and developments.
“Sometimes you don’t know and you see your own weaknesses and you have to listen to the people that are criticizing you,” Minister McGill, speaking on Voice of Liberia on Monday March 8, 2021.
“We, as leaders of the country, are willing to accept all criticisms and we are willing to listen to the people at all times,” he said. “And I think we as leaders are willing to listen and we will continue to listen to the people.”
He said not all criticisms are hateful, adding that some people criticize because they want their leaders to do the right thing for the country.
He continued: “And whenever people are criticizing you, don’t get angry. Sometimes, when people criticize, it doesn’t mean that they hate you and it is not mean that all the critics are hateful. Some people criticize you because they want you to do the right thing for the country.”
Minister McGill also asserted that Government job is not a lifetime issuance, but it is an opportunity to “serve your people and if you are given the opportunity to serve, you should apply all efforts to serve diligently.”
“There were people who served before us, and there will be people after us,” he stressed. “So, if you are given the opportunity to serve, do it diligently. Listen to the people. And we should do our best because when we do our best, the people will understand and there will be no reason the people will not allow us to serve and when we are doing our best. Surely, they will allow us to serve them continually.”
At the same time, the Ministry of State boss urged all Liberians to be patient because there are several challenges facing the country and the government. He vowed: “We will apply all efforts to improve it.”
He added that if everyone is patient with President Weah, the country’s economy will improve in the next few years.
“For now, everything is not hundred percent good, but many Liberians can see for themselves that the president is making an effort, honest effort for the development of Liberia,” Minister McGill stressed further. “The President has a genuine desire to change this country around and I can assure you if the Liberian people give President Weah the chance, our economy will be bumping in a few years’ time.”
He said one of the major priorities of the President is road connectivity because when people from the Southeast, like Maryland, Sinoe and others can drive for few hours to get to Monrovia and bringing agriculture produces, it will start bumping our economy.