Liberians go to the polls in a few months to decide in which direction they want their country to be led. The Government of Liberia, under the leadership of incumbent president George Manneh Weah, is wrestling overnight to convince the citizenry to give their man a second term. The opposition community on the other hand, is saying, given the enormity of the governance gaps widened by the current administration, it makes no sense to reelect President Weah in 2023. Making the case for the opposition community, Liberia’s former Representative to the International Maritime Organization (IMO), Attorney Isaac W. Jackson, Jr. is warning his compatriots to keenly observe two key events that occurred during President Weah’s recent visit to the United Nations, and decipher for themselves why they should bring back the CDC-led government in 2023. Making the case in a social media post titled: “Home is Where the Heart is”, Mr. Jackson attempts to convince Liberians that President Weah’s heart is not in Liberia, rather in the United States that is striving to ostracize his administration for bad governance. See below full text of Jackson’s article.
Home Is Where The Heart Is
By Isaac W. Jackson. Jr.
There were many deeply embarrassing and disturbing moments for our country during President George Weah’s participation in and address to the 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly. For me, two stood out as amongst the worst. One occurred in the UN General Assembly Hall, and the other, occurred outside the UN Headquarters.
Obviously restricted to within 25-mile radius of the UN Headquarters, the President readied his officials with cameras to photo-bomb US Government officials regardless of their grades. President Weah embarrassingly scurried from his seat to greet US Secretaries and Ambassador knowing they would not come to greet him, and that he was restricted from going to Washington, DC, for any meeting with US officials.
It is ok, they say, to fool some people sometimes. But when a leader believes in his own lies, the country he leads is in trouble. President Weah knows he is caged within 25-mile radius of the UN Headquarters, and therefore, is unwelcome to the United States. Denigrating the Office of President further, by photo-bombing US officials who will not formally meet with him, only to deceive Liberians at home that he is “engaging” with US officials, is disgraceful.
Secondly, playing with a dog he claims to be his, at a Brooklyn address, just outside Manhattan, the President said, on camera, “After four years, it’s good to be back home.” This is political blasphemy!
The President of our country was “glad to be back home”, in Brooklyn, New York, after being away for “four years”, working as the President of Liberia. Back home, not as in Gibraltar or Paynesville, but in the United States of America. Back home where his son plays for the US National Soccer Team. Back home where he keeps his Ballon d’Or and other most valuable personal assets, including his dog, which might be too good to live where he works – in Liberia.
“I am a citizen of the world”, President Weah tried to taunt his critics and those who pointed to his restriction to within 25-mile radius of the UN Headquarters, although he was doing so from within the 25-mile radius. All Liberians had hoped for, and candidate Weah had promised to be, was a good citizen of Liberia who would see Liberia as home, so that he would care about the direction of the country and the wellbeing of the people.
Liberians were wrong. Weah does not care about Liberia – not about rising crimes and drugs robbing our young people of their future; not about an economy that is shrinking and families finding it harder and harder to make it; not about the raping of women, girls and babies; not about stealing in the government which is keeping Liberians poor; and certainly not about jobs and opportunities for empowerment for Liberians. He does not care because in his mind, Liberia is where he works and not his “home”.
Indeed, President Weah was born in Liberia and lived his childhood and youthful life there. But President Weah knows his future and valuable personal assets are stored away where his dog is – in his “home” in Brooklyn. When he became wealthy, Weah moved out of Liberia, and after his successful footballing career, resided in the United States. It has been credibly reported that he acquired US citizenship.
President Weah’s apologists may argue that he made a mistake. But the President’s mismanagement of our country over the last 5 years make categorizing this embarrassing statement as a ‘slip of tongue’, difficult. In 2023, Liberians will correct this embarrassment. We will return Weah to his “home” and reunite him with his dog.