MONROVIA: President George Manneh Weah has said, Liberia, having gone through a devastating and brutal civil war and the consequences that followed over the years, some of which the nation is yet to recovered from, will never again go to any form of war or violence that may see it tearing apart once again, urging the citizens to continue to pray and embrace peace especially during the crucial period leading to the 2023 general elections.
President Weah made the assertion on Sunday, July 23, 2023, when he delivered a special remark at the intercessory program of the nation’s 176th Independence Anniversary held at the Philadelphia Church, in Congo Town, where he had led an array of government officials and other invited guests. He made a passionate appeal to the citizens and residents of the country to continue praying for Liberia and its people so that the hard-earned peace “we are enjoying today through the efforts of so many people and our development partners will be sustained”.
“Liberians we have peace, let us promote peace. Election is around the corner; this is the only country we have. As politicians, we do not define the country, the country defines us. We may have our own aspirations but it does not mean the people we lead should not be in peace.
“Liberia is like the State of Israel in the world, it is a blessed nation but the country needs to be on track to keep the peace. Let us forget about everything and promote peace, we should forget about who knows and who does not know, only God designates who to be leader or not,” he said.
President Weah, apparently looking around in the congregation and not being able to see some of the politicians contesting for elective positions including the presidency, took a swipe at them for not attending such an important occasion marking the nation’s independence, and questioned the rationale for them to stay away if they are desirous of being leaders in the country.
“If you want to rule this country, what stops you from going to these kinds of programs? What stops you from attending? Are these not people who should pray for the country? I attended all the intercessory programs including even the inauguration program where I felt I had won but was cheated.
“I was praying for Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for her to succeed when I was in opposition. Whether it is true or not, God knows. I also prayed for our former Vice President; I prayed for the country to be peaceful and the citizens to enjoy peace and harmony.
“If you cannot pray and wish your country well, then how do you want to lead this country?” Weah wondered.
He said it was unfortunate that some people are still dwelling on things of the past that could lead the country to another round of conflict with their utterances, citing a pastor who spoke on “generational gap” during a church service in Buchanan City, Grand Bassa County, which according to the President was suggesting that the “gap” is happening under his administration.
“I was in a church the other day in Buchanan and the pastor preached about generational gap and I wonder why this when you should be preaching peace? When did the generational gap start? Since the country was founded, there has been a generational gap. It did not start today. We should be teaching our children about peace and not generational gaps.
“We saw it 1980, we saw it in 1990, when it happened, we presented ourself as peace ambassador, we came to restore, to disarm to have the peace we are enjoying today. And those who refused to disarm are the ones today threatening the peace. We need to rise up and say it will not happen again.
“Children that should be far in their quest for a good life, today they are no more. Some of their parents are right where they are and so when you preach about gaps, you are not preaching peace.
“Those who preach generational gap are the ones to be the first to get on the plane but most of the people who will feel it will not be on the plane, please keep the peace.
President stated that he could not fathom why some politicians in the country are not discussing the key issues that affect the country and how they could remedy the situation, stressing that what he sees or hears most of the time is mere gossip and stories that have no substance.
He jokingly made reference to a post he saw on social media where the author was trying to mock him (Weah) why he was always sweating when he was speaking.
“Like I saw on the social media the last time about a post from someone, who said why I am always sweating when I am speaking. Is that an issue at all? Whenever I am speaking, I am moving my body, like the other lady who was sweating while singing here. So, I asked oh, so that lady is sweating too?
“Once you are doing something and moving around, you will sweat. If you don’t sweat, then you have issues”, the President said amid laughter.
He told the congregation that for him personally he has so many things to thank God for, and what God has done for the footballing career of his son Timothy who suffered some injuries early in the year but with fervent prayers and trust in God, Timothy was able to secure a career-changing contract with an Italian giant, Juventus FC.
“Early this year my son, Timothy had injuries and I asked for prayers from Bishop Winker, Bishop Harris and the other men of God; and God answered our prayers and he signed with one of the greatest clubs in Italy, Juventus. We are grateful for the many things He has done for us and we must praise Him”, President Weah said.
Earlier in his intercession sermon, Bishop George Harris of the Philadelphia Church who spoke on the Theme, “Let Peace Be in the Land”, with several texts on peace, especially the preaching of Christ Jesus on peace, said God ‘s promise for His people is for peace and the good things for life and called on Liberians to work towards living peacefully for the betterment of the country.