MONROVIA: As Liberians both at home and abroad look forward to the ensuing general elections, the Liberian community in Nigerians has called on Liberians ensure that the exercise is devoid of violence and any act that will undermine the country’s nascent democracy just as it commended Liberians for their resilience and patriotism “during this critical period of our nation”
In a press statement issued in Abuja, Nigeria, the group, under the aegis of the Organization of Liberian Communities in Nigeria(OLICON), whose president, Garrison Thomas signed the release said thus far the determination displayed to elect the candidates of their choice during this “2023 election is the highest civil responsibility a citizen can undertake”
“Our country Liberia is one hundred and seventy six years (176 years) yet, we remain one of the poorest countries on the continent of Africa. This sad reality can be attributed to the bitter and unfortunate brutal civil war we experienced for over a decade. It is on this premise that we called on every Liberian to uphold the peace by rejecting any form of violence during and after the elections, as any form of chaos has the potential to plunge the country and its populace into further penury.
“If you die fighting for a politician, your aged mother, wife, children and other family members will suffer because those you are fighting your fellow Liberian for, will neglect your family. Be wise, ”the ambition of a political party or politician does not worth the blood of your brother or sister.’’ Liberians cannot afford to go back to the days where men, women, boys and girls died from starvation and bullet wounds, those horrible days of our nation must not be allowed to come back. Perform your constitutional right and civic responsibility by voting the candidates of your choice but do not support any form of violence”, part of the release said.
The release further said the voter’s card in the possession of the citizens will determine which path the country will take for the next six years, urging them to “be loyal to mama Liberia and be kind to your children and fellow compatriots by taking the right decisions as you go to the polls on October 10th, 2023”.
“We also use this medium to call on the National Election Commission(NEC) to ensure that the vote of every voter counts by making this election free, fair, transparent and credible. We appeal to all political parties to encourage their supporters to shun any form of hostility during and after these processes and seek redress through legal means where irregularities are suspected. “As Liberians, we are on the same flight, if you crash, we will all perish together”, the statement further said.
The statement also said the citizens need to change the narrative that they are hostile people by sustaining the gains through their collective determination to make the nation great again by electing people based on competence, track record and ability to deliver the country from the quagmires that have bedevilled the nation for too long.
“We also call on President George Manneh Weah, Commander In Chief of the Armed forces of the Republic of Liberia as a matter of urgency to take steps that will ensure that voters discrimination and intimidation do not occur at polling stations and that the process is free of any form of violence during and after the election and, ensure that every candidate regardless of his or her political affiliation is protected during and after this process. We commend the government for the high level of freedom of speech witnessed in our country and the political tolerance of President George Manneh Weah administration that made Liberia a nation without a political prison. We commend all the political parties for their doggedness and determination to make our country great again.
“Shun every form of violence and let the Liberian people breathe fresh air before and after the polls”, the statement concluded.