VP Taylor Gets Mammoth Welcome In Bomi, Cape Mt. -Continues 2023 Buildup to Liberia’s Western Region

MONROVIA – The decisive nature of the 2023 presidential elections is finding huge expression in the seriousness and methodical approach the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) is developing nearly 12 months away. President Weah recently eclipsed his own version of the nationwide tour which was largely characterized by interactions with the rural people, and updating them with development progress made since his ascendency in 2018. Now his principle deputy, Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor, has also taken the roadmap to the hinterland, first in the Central and Northern regions, and parts of the Southeast, and now on the Western flank. Reports speak of swarms of citizens trooping their way in the direction of the Vice President as she moved from town to town in Bomi and Cape Mount counties. The Analyst reports.   

As part of her nationwide county tour to interact with citizens and solicit views on their needs as well as to engage in wider consultation towards 2023, Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor over the weekend visited two counties in Western Liberia, Bomi and Grand Cape Mount Counties.

The Liberian Vice President received an overwhelming reception in all the places visited, including towns and villages where the citizens and residents lavished commendations on the VP for the work her government has been doing.

She was thanked the locals for the support they have accorded the administration of President George Manneh Weah since its inauguration and then solicited their continuous support and endorsement for continuity of the present dispensation in2023.

VP Taylor who had already visited Grand Gedeh and Nimba Counties to commence the nationwide initiative,  began her visit in Bomi County on Friday, October 14 starting from Deman where she was received by local county officials.

Swarms of people displayed traditional welcome rituals, including singing and dancing.

Partisans of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) who were all on hand to receive the Vice President and entourage chanted partisan battle cries and slogans.

Apparently feeling excited having the Vice President, the citizens presented her with a white rooster and assorted farm products as sign of their pleasure seeing her in their midst.

They also used the occasion to present some of their challenges and then appealed to her for her timely consideration among which were the need for women empowerment, provision of health facilities and the enhancement of educational opportunities especially the younger ones because the facilities in the areas were limited and lack of teachers as well.

In her response, VP Taylor thanked the people of Deman for the warm reception accorded her and her entourage as well as keeping the peace and supporting the government’s initiatives.

She told the people that she listened to their concerns and has taken interest in providing the solution needed to make life better for the people.

“I want to thank you very much for giving me this huge welcome,” VP Taylor told the locals. “We are grateful for that. I have listened to what you have said and that is the whole reason why I am making this journey to meet with our people, to hear from them their problems and how we can find solutions to them. The reports from my visit will be made to the President, George Manneh Weah, who is a talk and do leader and always eager to assist his citizens.”

VP Taylor’s next visit was on the campus of the CH Dewey High School where she had the opportunity to launch the Sanitary Pad project for female students, terming the project as an initiative to solve the menstrual related problems girls go through while in school.

She noted that the inability to access healthy sanitary pads while experiencing their periods have led some students dropping from school.

The Liberian Vice President also disclosed the opening of a sanitary pad bank where enough pads will be stored and students can access the materials with ease.

She extended thanks to the Chinese embassy in Liberia for being supportive of the project where huge consignments have been donated to her office.

The Vice President who has been in the forefront of the girls education in Liberia also disclosed that an additional number of girls will be added to the list of girls she is already sponsoring in high schools throughout the country.

The Vice President’s statement underscores her concern about women empowerment. She stressed that the government has initiated programs among which were funds dedicated to women to assist them engage in business as a way of raising income to support and sustain their families.

While visiting the new market structure built by the government to alleviate the plight of traders and facilitate robust trade in Tubmanburg and its environment, VP Taylor accepted to convey the concern of the women to the President for the structure to be expanded to cater to the huge number of marketers coming into the structure as well as other opportunities available to the women.

“I have seen the structure and have noted your concern that this place needs to be expanded to cater to the growing number of people coming here,” she said further addressing the women’s request.

“You talk about empowerment and I wish to inform you that the government has made some money available to the women and we do not want the money to just be put in someone’s hand. We want you to form groups in the form of village savings so that you can use the money to make it grow.”

She told the people that there are so many things the government has done for Bomi County, including things being currently done in the county, adding that all of the protects couldn’t be done in a short time as some require adequate time.

She continued: “I am happy that the people are seeing what we have been doing and are also urging us to do more for them. But to do everything they want us to do we will need time and that is why I am asking our people to give President George Manneh Weah additional time in 2023 by voting him for the second time so that he be able to complete all the projects he has started for the people.”

The Vice President later on attended a town hall meeting in Tubmanburg City, where she met with youth and women groups, marketers, traditional rulers, local county officials, who presented various requests to the government for solutions.

 The youth, some of whom are students, expressed concerns about the lack of opportunities, including the need for skills acquisition to boost their chances for employment and engage income generating venture, get scholarship opportunities for college going youths.

The women appealed for soft loans to engage in commercial activities, vocational training that can lead to certification in tailoring, baking, catering, etc. as well as scholarship opportunities for their children to advance their education beyond the Associate Degrees being currently offered by the Bomi County College.

For their part, the traditional rulers said they were grateful to the government for the means of transportation given to them when the President donated vehicles and chairs for their mobility some time ago which have impacted positively on their work and functions.

They however called on the government through VP Taylor to increase their salaries so as to reflect the reality of the day and also made an appeal on behalf of their colleagues who are yet to get on government’s payroll.

“We have taken notes of all your requests and I am sure we will make the reports to the President for prompt action,” she noted. “The good thing is he is a listening President. He is a talk and do President. There are some of the requests made that are readily in the purview of the government to solve right away and others will need some legislative actions.”

“Like I have already said about money for the women to do business as a form of women empowerment, this will address your request for women empowerment.  We are not going to give the money to individual persons but we want them to form groups and money will be given to them to do their businesses.

“We are also happy that our traditional rulers and chiefs are acknowledging what this government has done for them and what it still intends to do so we are also asking them to support this government in 2023 so that we will be able to do what you want us to do.”

The citizens who spoke through groups and other institutions assured VP Taylor of their unflinching support towards the re-election bid of President Weah in 2023 as a demonstration of what he has done for the people of Bomi County and what he continues to do.

The Vice President also visited the campus of the Oscar Romero School of the Deaf to assess their needs where she was touched about what the school is doing in the lives of the deaf citizens attending the institution.

Having been presented with some request and being moved to do something in that direction, VP Taylor promised to avail to the administration an amount of $5,000 from her office annually to support the school in undertaking some projects.

The Vice President, speaking later on to the media to sum up her trip to Bomi County, expressed her happiness of the visit and thanked the people for the warm receptions she received.

“I have been pleased with the visit so far because these are my people. I have children here, one of my children bought land here and is planning to make a farm,” she told journalists.

“I am overwhelmed everywhere we went, people reminded us of our promises we made and that is the reason for the visit. It tells us where the gaps are. Most of the issues here have been human issues, chiefs want for their salaries to be increased, women talking about money to expand their village savings and the youth looking for resource centers. I am hoping that reports from the visits will be made available soon and presented to the President who will be excited to do something for the people.”

The Vice President then departed for Grand Cape mount county where she again was met with an avalanche of people who had come out in their numbers to give her and the party a befitting reception.

Her tour took her to Sinje, Tieni and Bo Waterside and had interactive meetings with the citizens and residents of the areas.

Like in previous communities visited, she explained the mission to the communities and the citizens welcomed her and provide a chain of challenges which she addressed with lot of assurances particularly if given another term of office with President Weah.

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