MONROVIA – As the race to 2023 swings into gear and politicians are delivering resonating messages to the electorates for support towards their project, Madam Marie Johnson, a forerunner for the position of representative of District # 2, Grand Gedeh County, has said with confidence that the citizens have received her message with open arm and have turned her ambition to represent them in the national legislature through the ensuing democratic process in 2023 into an irresistible movement that stands for genuine change the masses have been craving for.
Speaking exclusively to The Analyst Newspaper in Monrovia after her first phase of her citizen engagement initiative which took her to a number of towns and villages in District #2, Grand Gedeh County, Madam Johnson who was visibly taken by surprise how she was received in most of the places visited without any prior notification said for a long time, the people were blindfolded by politicians who only wanted power for themselves and once gotten abandoned the people into perpetually backwardness, poverty, neglect and untold suffering. She said it was a welcoming development that the people have seen through all the fake promises and have vowed to rally around her ambition that truly stands for total liberation of the people.
“It was something out of this world and I am finding it difficult to describe how our people came all out to show their support and solidarity; it was a total surprise that they have taken my intent as a collective project that they have decided to own and drive to success. I am talking about from every category of our population, be it the old, the young , the children who are not even within the voting bracket. So we are grateful to God for this unprecedented acceptance and I will jealously hold this as a trust that I should not betray once I am elected.
“The whole thing has turned into a movement and as I move from one village to another, from one town to another, from one community to another, the message continues to resonate with the people and received wholeheartedly. It is a defeat to the misconceptions, lies and bad politics that have kept the people down for a long time”, the elated aspirant said
When asked why the people are receptive towards her aspiration despite there are some other persons in the race, Madam Johnson who affectionately referred to as “Madam Light”, because of the massive provision of solar light in all the villages, towns and communities in D#2, said it has to do with the deception, betrayal and general fatigue the people have suffered in the hands of the politicians over the years and are now resolved to vote otherwise in her favor in 2023.
“I can say that has to do with the resolution of the people. They are resolved not to follow them anymore after suffering from their lies, deception, betrayal and the fatigue associated with all what the people have gone through. They tried to bring some of these old tactics around when I first declared my intention to contest the race. From every stage we reached there was one lie or attempt to dissuade the people but then they responded favorably to every falsehood against us.
“It has reached the point of no return and the message is clear. You cannot continue deceiving the people and you think they will forever be following you blindly. This is the last bus stop and it has ended”, she said.
Responding to a question how she feels being a lone female in the race against several men, some of whom have been in politics for a very long time and have mastered the game, Madam Johnson quickly made a swift interjection that for her, the decision to contest was never bordered on gender or playing the gender card to gain cheap favor but rather it was even “those establishment politicians who were moving from one place to another telling them that over their dead body, a female should never be their lawmaker”
“I did not suggest or ever thought of using gender to win some cheap sympathy vote. I approached the process in line with the constitution as a free citizen to contest and provide the leadership and direction the district should follow if genuine development will come. My conviction is that the level of poverty, suffering , neglect and the unnecessary backwardness of our people have nothing to do with gender, whether the candidate is a male or female. It has to do with who has the solution and who has even demonstrated the capacity to change the narrative of our people in terms of tangible intervention.
“Some other people for the obvious reasons that they will lose the race or their principals will be woefully defeated jumped into this gender card that it was against tradition or whatever they call it that a female should not be their lawmaker. You will be surprised that there are more men in this team than the women so you can see that their naïve campaign does not have any root in the hearts of the people. We are in this race to win it”, she said.
Madam Johnson told The Analyst that she was taken by surprise how her electrification project which saw every part of the district was lighted up, was appreciated by the people because she did not know the level of impact it would have created.
“I had just thought there was a need to take light to the people to restore the dignity of the people not knowing that there was going to be this huge impact and it has earned me the name “Madam Light” which I am even shying away from. They told me because of the light, the market hours have been extended into late hours of the night, security has improved, the rate of accidents by motorbikes and vehicles have reduced, meetings are now held in open in the evening hours, children come up in the evening to play, the students have improved in their academic work because they now study in groups and at home uninterrupted, etc” she said.
She said unlike the perception where it is said that women normally do not support their fellow women in political projects, she has been receiving huge endorsement and support from the women of district D #2 and it has never been a situation like hers where women are volunteering their time, energy and resources to make sure that she is elected. Madam Johnson said they have been coming in their numbers and grouping themselves as campaign foot soldiers in villages, towns and communities
The astute businesswoman and humanitarian said that taking District #2 from its present status to a worthy place where citizens will benefit from supporting the right candidate remains paramount to her and that with collective efforts she will ensure that development comes the way of the district. She spoke about the lack of government presence in terms of infrastructural development in the district and mentioned the makeshift and dilapidated police station in Ziah Town, the capital city of District # 2 which she said is not worthy to be a place for those providing protection and security to be sheltering.
“That was awful and it speaks to the lack of government’s presence in the district in terms of impactful infrastructural projects. You can allow people who provide protection and security to the people and properties in the district to work in that exposed and humiliating makeshift building made of mud, sticks and poor roofing. That is the unacceptable”, she said, promising to see whatever intervention she could make to have a befitting security post after meeting with the police authority in Monrovia.
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