“Poverty and Hardship on Faces of Citizens” -Dr. Cassell, Chides Weah In “26” Message

The Political Leader, Vision Bearer and Standard Bearer of the People’s Liberation Party (PLP) Dr. Daniel E. Cassell has said that Liberia’s once acclaimed place as a “Beacon of Hope and a Sweet Land of Liberty”, has now been eroded by bad governance and economic backwardness as  the order of the day, while extreme poverty and hardship are seen on the faces of most citizens as “widespread stealing, looting and the depleting of our country’s coffers by a selective few in the public sector is on the increase, leaving our citizens destitute and to survive at the mercy of God”

Dr. Cassell, who is one of the very few opposition figures in the country to voice out against prevailing situations in the country made this known in his July 26, message to Liberian people, when he sent his goodwill message to Liberians both at home and abroad as the nation marked its 175th Independence anniversary where he slammed the President George Manneh Weah led government for visiting untold sufferings and hardship on the people.

“What do we have to be happy about or celebrate when the prices of basic commodities are astronomically increasing to the detriment of the ordinary citizens, most of whom cannot afford five United States dollars a day ($5.00 USD)?

“Our country Liberia, which was once considered the “Beacon of Hope and a Sweet Land of Liberty” for many across the African continent turns 175 years old amid mountainous challenges which continues to strangulate the growth and development of our post-conflict nation and its citizenry.

“We as a nation and people are experiencing turbulent times since the inception of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) led government of President George Manneh Weah”, he said

Cassell said many parents cannot afford to send their children to school and a significant number of the citizens continue to go to bed on empty stomach due to the harsh economic constraints and a record historically high rate of unemployment, because of the poor manner and form in which our country is being governed by the current CDC-administration.

He further said children are being forced into child labor as the only alternative, as they serve as breadwinners for their families, by selling between moving vehicles in the streets and other places and being deprived of the opportunity to acquire basic education as compared to the children of government officials who are learning in private schools locally and abroad.

“Should we celebrate and be happy during this year’s July 26th Independence Day when public officials, especially the President and his close associates are accumulating ill-gotten, unexplained, and questionable wealth, while mysterious deaths and killings are on the increase?

“The gap between the rich and poor, particularly those who are given authority to steer the affairs of our country and manage our natural resources, continue to widen daily due to the lack of job opportunities, mostly for our young people. Foreign-direct investment opportunities have not come to realization under the current CDC-government due to the lack of trust and confidence from the international communities, and the consistent requests for “kickbacks” as a conduit for investment in our nation’s economy.

“Most of our citizens lack access and cannot afford the cost of basic healthcare services, as a result a record number of children and adults are dying from medical problems that are preventable.

Speaking on the health sector, Cassell said Public health centers across the country lack medicines, medical supplies and other essential medical equipment that are needed to save lives and guarantee quality healthcare delivery in an effective and efficient manner. He said while these public health centers are being robbed off those medical necessities, the private hospitals, clinics, and pharmacies of those in charge of our country’s health sector continues to flourish due to the diversion of medicines, medical supplies, and others essential medical equipment that are intended to benefit the less fortunate of our society, who cannot afford access to medical care at those private facilities.

“The chanting of the ruling party’s battle cries, bootlicking and heaping undeserved praises are the only guarantors for jobs or handing of crumbs to our people by those political actors/actresses in authority.

“During the immediate past administration, “papa used to come home with a plastic bag full with gifts for everyone at home”. But now, papa cannot even come home for fear of being bashed by his wife or children for not even leaving food money home to feed his family. The pots of citizens are no longer boiling and no food is being kept for strangers anymore.

“Should we still celebrate when government officials, including the President, are dancing to “Buga music” and love and cherish the manner and form in which our less fortunate brothers and sisters line up at their compounds from the morning to evening hours just to beg for alms from them?

“It is a known fact that Liberia is only getting old in age but backward in terms of infrastructural development, economic growth and building of our institutions as evidenced by the growing wave of societal ills, deprivation, marginalization, desperation, and poor national leadership.

“My fellow citizens, what do we have to celebrate as an aged-old country when these vices are visible and nothing is being done to curtail or eradicate them from our society?, he said

 The businessman turned politician said as the nation observes its 175th independence, Liberians should reflect and make a critical decision on the needs of our country and how they can collectively tackle the challenges by committing themselves to a change in national leadership for the betterment of their lives and the transformation of the country.

“Ahead of the 2023 elections, let’s commit ourselves to the liberation and emancipation of our people from bad governance to guarantee the equitable distribution of the country’s resources.

Let’s standup and combat against circumstances that are threatening the wellbeing of our people and ensure that Liberia regains its pre-war status. It is incumbent upon all of us to place our country back on the right path by firstly maintaining the peace and tranquility and making a decisive decision towards a change.

“Though times are tough, let’s brave the storm and remain patriotic citizens to ensure that our country moves from backwardness to prosperity.

“Let’s hold hands with our religious leaders to continue to pray for our nation and remain resilient and committed towards a cause that will bring about sustainable development and opportunities to our country and citizens.

“As our national anthem states: “This glorious land of liberty will long be ours”, we must stand up against vices which have the proclivity to keep us backward and deprived our unborn generations their fair share of the national resources and democratically take back our country from the gang of thieves and looters.

“Let’s do nothing to derail the peace and stability of our nation during these troubling times but remain steadfast and hopeful that the dawning of a new day is fast approaching in Liberia”, he concluded.

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