An advocate for social justice and economic freedom, Dr. Togba Nah Tipoteh says unification should be expected not to be realized overnight, but one people expect to take place on a path that throws away poverty generation and brings in poverty alleviation. The Liberian political economists further said in order to get on the right path of unification, good persons have to be elected into public offices noting that getting good persons elected into public offices requires a FAIR electoral system.
“On account of the fact that Liberia does not have a FAIR electoral system, awareness raising has to be increased to motivate the Liberian people to take non-violent actions to change the electoral system from UNFAIR to FAIR in order for good persons to be elected into public offices,” Dr. Tipoteh, a man acclaimed for his activism for social justice and political and economic freedom, said.
The Changes in the electoral system that he referred to include appointing Liberians as Commissioners of the National Election Commission (NEC), as indicated in the Constitution of Liberia; clean up the Voter Registration Roll; using good voter registration machines and not flawed ones, as brought into Liberia by one of the foreign partners; stopping the illegal transportation of Liberians and foreigners to vote; and topping the personalization of decision-making by NEC Commissioners, Registrars and Voting Center Representatives.
Dr. Tipoteh’s assertions were contained in a commentary he issued in commemoration of the National Unification Day celebrated last Friday, May 14th. He said unification is a process that takes time, and pointed out that for the Unification in Liberia to become a reality, what is most important for Good Governance, which he reiterated is the Unification process on the right path.
However, Dr. Tipoteh indicated that due to the personalization of Unification in Liberia, the wrong path to Unification is being pursued.
“Unification is on the wrong path in Liberia because national decision-making continues to be made on the basis of “who you know” rather than “what you can do”. This form of appreciation leads to depreciation, the lack of value, and the lack of relevance towards the improvement of living conditions in Liberia.” several time Presidential Candidate diagnosed
He said the record from the 1950s shows clearly the dismal longstanding and widespread situation in Liberia, where, at that time, Liberia exhibited the second highest economic growth rate per capita in the world while less than one per cent of Liberians accounted for more than sixty per cent of the income and wealth of the country.
This record, he said, is a phenomenon that has come to be known globally as economic growth without development for short.
Dr. Tipoteh maintained that the main State policy for managing the Liberian economy continues to be the production of raw materials for export, where Liberia’s natural resources, such as iron ore, rubber and logs, are exported to the developed countries.
The prices of the exports and imports, according to him, are determined by the global market, dominated as they are by transnational corporations and their respective governments.
The Liberian politician and economist indicated that Value addition takes place in the developed countries, as seen in the enormity of imports made from the exports of under-developed countries like Liberia, adding that this dismal policy remains poverty generating rather than poverty alleviating.
“State management puts the blame for the poverty on the global market rather than on its national decision-making. In fact, less than a year ago, with the Liberian economy in the poverty quagmire, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) praised the government of Liberia for its fiscal discipline and provided some USD38 million of financial assistance to the government, he said.
But Dr. Tipoteh noted that Since January of 2018, all of the commercial banks of Liberia complained that they were facing the shortage of Liberian dollars, then shortly after their complaint, the government announced that it was providing USD25 million to mop up the “excess Liberian dollars”.
“No wonder, the immediate past Central Bank Executive Governor, Mr. Nathaniel Patray, said publicly that he would do anything that the President of Liberia instructed him to do,” Dr. Tipoteh recalled. He said the present Executive Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia, Mr. Aloysius Tarlue Jr., has said publicly that he was not appointed on the basis of competence but on the basis of the enormous votes that the people of Grand Gedeh, his County of origin, gave the President to get him elected as President of Liberia.
According to him, “Commentators who bring out the foregoing indications are called “enemies of progress,” stating, “Clearly, there is no progress, as Legislators have access to at least USD1, 000 a day and their foreign friends/partners in the commercial sector alone have access to at least USD2 million a day while over 80 per cent of the people of Liberia remain in poverty, having access to at most less than USD2 a day.”
In terms of the way forward to get out of the longstanding and widespread poverty problem, as we “celebrate” Unification Day, Dr. Tipoteh suggested that from the experience with the Ebola epidemic in Liberia, it is learned that persons who benefit from setting the House called Liberia on fire must not be expected to bring water or anything else to put out the fire.
“So, Ebola was sent into the dustbin of history in Liberia when the Community took ownership of the anti-Ebola process. Community awareness teaches us that it is the good Family that builds the Nation, that builds the world, the Global Community,” he stressed.
He pointed out that at the level of the Family, right within my Community, a family had a re-union on Unification Day. Family members scattered here and abroad by the Civil War in Liberia and the Public Health Pandemic were brought together on Unification Day in the realization that a United and Happy Family makes a United and Happy Nation and a United and Happy World, a United and Happy Global Community.
In the competition about what to do with the Corona Pandemic, Dr. Tipoteh said the position of multilateralism is defeating the position of unilateralism, as seen in the recent defeat of former USA President Donald Trump.