By Andrew Gilmour, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights
In my line of work, it is all too rare to observe great progress. But that is what I found in Liberia two weeks ago. The previous time I had visited, in 2004, the effects of the terrible war were everywhere. I was moved to see what has been achieved since then, which is largely due to the government and people, with vital support provided by the United Nations Mission in Liberia.
When Liberians cast their votes on October 10, they will be voting for nothing. History itself will record nothing. And yes, nothing will happen after 2017. The poor, huddled masses and marginalized – they all will expect nothing. Nothing in itself will turn to nothing for something.
'This is to certify the Port Facility Security Assessment (PFSA) and Port Facility Security Plan (PFSP) of the Samuel Alfred Ross Port of Greenville, Republic of Liberia after an exhaustive reviewed, meets the guidelines and procedures pursuant to the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS) X1–2 Chapter 16.3–3.15 and 16.4 and the Contracting Government’– Designated Authority, ISPS, Republic of Liberia.
Elections are not taken so seriously until campaigns commence. Campaign allows candidates to expatiate their messages, make public their plans and market their platforms. It is the conduit via which people seeking offices may seek to show and otherwise make a vaunted boast of how they and their parties are cash-filled and expensive-prepared to reap votes. So too will the case be beginning July 31, the day many have anxiously anticipated.
In less than 24 hours, the tickling clock shall rest at the day you made a leap and bold step forward by informing the comity of nations that you could now steer your own affairs - government, breed your children and determine how your economy should run. As I write you these somehow meaningless words, I am mindful that you may not get to read them, but somehow by imagination I assume you will.
Along with my colleagues, I have been placed at the center of the rape case involving Representative Morais Waylee of District #2, Grand Gedeh County. Since our protest on May 23 calling for a probe into this matter and that he should recuse himself from his position of influence, I have received threats - via phone calls as well as physical. In fact, I no longer move around alone, and even moving with people, I have seen and heard individuals threw talks at me. People loyal to this lawmaker who, in my mind, embrace rape, have sought every medium possible to get at me. Some have even abused my family, branded me a paid-agent advocate and stereotyped my tribe and religion. They fail to realize that conviction and conscience are what drive my thoughts and shape my actions: the believe that Liberia can only go forward if its citizens - whether rich or poor, in government or out - are treated equally under the law and made to account for their actions when said law is bridged.
The Minister of Water and Environment and Chairperson for International Relations of the African National Congress of the Republic of South Africa, Dr. Edna Molewa says the political economy that Africa wants must be decided by Africans and that all Africans must come together to ensure that we build Africa.
President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has said Liberians and Americans can now reflect on the historical fact that we were born of the same dream and the same ideals of freedom, liberty, justice and prosperity for all. President Sirleaf said Liberians are not only friends of America, but share a common history, replete with the struggles that bind us, which timelessly remind us that we are family.