Editorial: We Need Issues Based Campaign

AS LIBERIANS ENTER the electioneering season towards the 2023 general elections, it is becoming increasingly clear that the poll would be very competitive and frenetic at the same time. But there have been growing concerns as to how to ensure the campaigns are issues-based across the board so that the electorates will have a better understanding of what they intend to do for them that will uplift citizens from the myriad of problems confronting the country.

WE HAVE REALIZED that the general nature of how campaigns are organized and conducted by politicians have given enough room to suggest that campaigns are carried out on non-issue related discourse. Campaign rallies are increasingly proving to be avenues for candidates to, in the words of Shakespeare, woo the hapless masses “with the craft of smile”, and in some cases “renting” them as crowd to populate the venues of campaigns while dishing out vain and unattainable promises that they know the audience may not critically dissect.

BESIDES, INDIVIDUALS PARTICIPATING in electoral process, mostly aspirants or candidates become the subject and predicate of discussion instead of people focusing on where those seeking elective positions stand on a number of issues including but not limited to corruption, health care, unemployment agriculture, gender equity, women empowerment, etc

IT IS IN this vein that we urge our citizens, especially the politicians to focus their attention on discussing key issues that affect the country and its people rather than downplaying them and dwelling on trivialities that place high premium on discussing individuals especially with the intent to launch personal attacks.

WHILE PERSONALITIES ARE important, the future of Liberia should be determined by the policies and plans put forward by the presidential candidates. One of the key issues that should be at the forefront of the election is the eradication of corruption.

CORRUPTION HAS PERSISTED in Liberia for far too long, and it has become a major obstacle to the country’s development. Any candidate who hopes to lead Liberia to a brighter future must have a concrete plan for tackling corruption in all its forms, whether it be in government, private sector, or civil society.

ANOTHER ISSUE THAT should be central to the campaign is the uplifting of the agriculture, health, education, and infrastructure sectors. Liberia’s economy is heavily reliant on agriculture, and the country has vast potential for growth in this sector. Any candidate who hopes to lead Liberia should have a plan for modernizing and expanding the agriculture sector, improving access to healthcare, revamping the education system, and upgrading the country’s infrastructure.

MOREOVER, THE EDUCATION system needs to be overhauled in order to create a more skilled workforce that can drive economic growth. The health sector needs to be improved to ensure that all Liberians have access to quality healthcare services. Infrastructure development is also critical, as it is essential for economic growth and development. In conclusion, the upcoming presidential campaign in Liberia should be based on issues, not personalities.

THE ERADICATION OF corruption, as well as the uplifting of the agriculture, health, education, and infrastructure sectors, should be at the center of the campaign. Liberians deserve leaders who can tackle these critical issues head-on, and only by focusing on these issues can the country achieve the progress that it deserves.

ENSURING THE EXISTENCE of adequate security for lives and properties of the citizens is paramount to the actual survival of the country. We need to make the people secure and live in an environment of peace and tranquility.

WE NEED TO focus on providing healthcare for the people because a healthy people represents a healthy nation. Our people are perishing out of common ailments that should not even happen if we put more priority on the health sector.

WE COULD GO on and on to list areas we should be addressing and have a clear determination if those who are seeking our votes have the capacity to deliver what we need from them. This can only happen if we begin to have serious issues-driven discussion and challenging our politicians to key into this very important aspect of campaigning for votes and we must insist that this forms the cornerstone of what we hope to achieve from the 2023 general election.

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