Dynamic platform guests; Officials of government present; Partisans of the governing Unity Party; Members of Boakai for All Liberians (BOFAL); Members of the National Movement for Boakai; Distinguish guests; ladies and gentlemen
I am exceedingly grateful to my colleagues for coopting me to execute this important function of delivering the keynote address. I am honored.
Before going into the address, I will like to draw your attention to a short allegory from the existential philosopher Soren Kierkegaard which will serve as the fulcrum of what I am going to say today.
Kierkegaard narrates the story of a traveling circus in Denmark that caught fire. The manager thereupon sent the clown, who was already dressed and made up for the performance, into the neighboring village to fetch help, especially as there was a danger that the fire would spread across the fields of dry stubble and engulf the village itself. The clown hurried into the village and requested the inhabitants to come as quickly as possible to the blazing circus and help to put the fire out. But the villagers took the clown’s shouts simply for an excellent piece of advertising, meant to attract as many people as possible to the performance; they applauded the clown and laughed till they cried. The clown felt more like weeping than laughing; he tried in vain to get people to be serious, to make it clear to them that this was no stunt, that he was not pretending but was in bitter earnest, that there really was a fire. His supplications only increased the laughter; people thought he was playing his part splendidly — until finally the fire did engulf the village; it was too late for help, and both circus and village were burned to the ground.”
Hon. Boakai, esteem comrades, Ladies and Gentlemen, this story resonates strongly with the political situation of our country in which many of our political actors have indulged in sordid pursuits of opportunism, patronage, and greed. These and other repugnant acts propelled some of our people towards a complete loss of faith in the political system. Some politicians are now being perceived as jesters in the circus whose actions can only be taken for an excellent show of comedy no matter how hard they try to convince the electorate.
Hon. Vice President, fellow colleagues, since the foundation of our republic, the affairs of our state have been managed by diverse political actors who have either been a blessing or a curse. On the one hand, there are those who through deeds and words have endeavoured or are struggling to inspire hope in the masses of our people whilst on the other, there are those who have failed to inspire faith.
As Liberians are accustomed to the usual charade associated with political speeches and play acting, they seek for the right messenger who, armed with integrity and honesty, will govern the country decisively and gave it back to all Liberians; - a messenger that will revolutionize the traditional way of politicking and firmly position our nation on the trajectory of sustainable economic growth and development; - a messenger that will unfasten the firm grip that mediocrity has on us as a people and lead us in confronting the challenges that once overcome, will see our nation basking in the yields of economic prosperity. As former president Obama once put it, “what has stopped us from meeting these challenges is not the absence of sound policies and sensible plans. What has stopped us is the failure of leadership, the smallness of our politics - the ease with which we're distracted by the petty and trivial, our chronic avoidance of tough decisions, and our preference for scoring cheap political points instead of rolling up our sleeves and building a working consensus to tackle big problems”.
Colleagues, for us, a glimmer of hope lies beyond the vast sea of faithlessness and despair – unlike the village in the allegory that is condemned to destruction. Our generation must considered itself extremely privileged to have a messenger who for 35 years have managed to insulate himself and remain unblemished in the dirty and sometimes brutish world of politics. We are privileged to have a team player, a game changer, a God-fearing, honest, and accountable leader that has demonstrated sincere commitment to upholding the rule of law and rebranding the image of our nation. A grass rooter, who like many of us here, defied the odds and made his way to the very pinnacle. I am speaking of Joseph Nyumah Boakai – the man for all Liberians (BOFAL).
Hon Vice President, we are interested in being part of your success story. As professionals, we are committed to galvanizing grassroots support that will see you in the Executive Mansion come January, 2018. Through our thorough scrutiny, we have already separated the chaff from the true grain and we have detected no deceit in you. Thus, we are embarking on a journey with you and with our personal resources, we will support your endeavour because we are convinced that you represent the hope of all Liberians.
Through this journey with you, we will conceptualize a Liberia void of exclusion and divisiveness and one in which every Liberian has the opportunity to contribute their quota to the development of our nation - think Liberia;
Through this journey with you, we will learn to put our country’s interest ahead of all other interests so that our country can once again be the enviable gem of sub-Saharan Africa – Love Liberia
Finally, through this journey with you, we will put our hand to the deck for the advancement of all our national systems so that the lives of people will be better - Build Liberia.