By Alva Mulbah Wolokolie & Garmonyou Wilson
Despite numerous calls from some quarters in Monrovia that President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf should step down from office and Vice President Joseph N. Boakai takes over, thousands of Liberians under the banner “Liberia for the Protection of Peace and Democracy (LPPD)” are expected to assemble at the Robert International Airport (RIA) in Margibi County and the ELWA Junction on Wednesday to give the President a rousing welcome back to the country. President Sirleaf has been out of the country for the past one month attending the United Nations General Assembly in New York. She has also paid visit to Canada and Costa Rica highlighting government’s agenda of transformation.
The group which comprised members from the ruling Unity Party (UP), opposition political parties, civil society organizations, youths, businessmen, shoes- shine boys, students and concerned Liberians are in high gear to storm the arrival of Madam President in appreciation of the sustained ten years of peace enjoyed by the citizenry.
Two executives of the group, Medina Wesseh and Musa Hassan Bility told Liberians at a local radio talk show last week Friday that it is a known fact that more needs to be done by the government but the sustenance of peace is paramount to the growth and development of the country.
Madam Wesseh and Mr. Bility clarified that the establishment of LPPD is not a campaign to support the Unity Party led administration for 2014 senatorial and 2017 elections but to show gratitude to the President and the Liberian people for keeping the country peaceful for a decade now.
Meanwhile, the LPPD’s called forum in preparation of the welcome-back festival yesterday held at the Monrovia City Hall brought together various state actors and the public to brainstorm and dialogue on Liberia’s ten years of peace; how to sustain it and continue it.
The peace forum also highlighted recent calls by some Liberians to have the President of Liberia stand down as the peace the nation has is plagued by corruption.
Senior Senator of Bong County, Jewel Howard Taylor serving as a panelist at the forum said even though Liberia has been experiencing relative peace for the past ten years, there are still problems that are deep rooted and need to be addressed adequately before the country can move forward.
During the forum a member of the Concern Women of Liberia, Esther Boima stressed the importance of education. Madam Williette Lysander from the Coalition of Political Parties Women, also a panelist called on partisans of opposition political parties to give constructive criticism to the Unity Party-led Government as one day they too would be at the forefront of the government and would need the collectivism of all stakeholders in the country to be successful.
The Minister of Gender and Development, Julia Duncan Cassell called on all well meaning Liberians to use dialogue to intervene in disputes because Liberia belongs to all.
For her part, the Director General of the General Services Agency, Mary Broh used the occasion to call on religious institutions to use their institutions to lead in the peace that the country is currently enjoying.
The LPPD forum that was heard throughout the country via live local radio broadcasts give Liberians the opportunity to interact with stakeholders, like themselves in ensuring that lasting peace is acknowledged by all Liberians.