For the record, I am an ardent and avowed militant of the Vanguard Student Unification Party who believes in the party’s revolutionary polemical catechism, as eloquently espoused by its founding fathers; absolutely nobody can rob me of my membership of this Party. Throughout my life I have known this Party as the conscience of enlightenment and bastion for social justice not only at the University of Liberia but also in the Liberian society. This party has neither bowed, stunted, nor fibbed before tyranny. This is the SUP we have known, and it is the SUP that I have committed myself to.
Such SUP has perished and fermented within the fullness of time; like every organization that has been captured by elements who pander to the penchant of primitive accumulation and merciless material possession, our SUP is now in the hands of charlatans who have steered it into the galaxy of contradictions of contradictions. These elements have gone amok in secluding honest brothers and sisters who are beaming with the true love of the Party, but for us we will stay this course until these elements are abdicated from leadership in our Party, and it is sanitized from the shackle of decadence. Then, we will sit, stand and invoke the spirit of ‘massescracy’ that has been in ruin and tatter.
Our little understanding of politics has reminded us that politics is about service to humanity, whether student or national politics alike. That is, the general interest of the community takes preeminence over the self-interest of a privileged minority. The essence of leadership is about the provision of happiness for the mass majority of the electorates. This is the reason why individuals who aspire to leadership in the political arena must cultivate the virtue of public spiritedness.
Paradoxically, such calling of leadership has been censored from the leadership construct of our beloved Party. A once glorious Party with a badge of honor and revolutionary aggressiveness and passion is now wallowing in the inglorious cesspool of dishonor. It is a cartel of crook elements and racketeer-ruffians who are fundamentally preoccupied with spewing catch phrases to impress the unsuspecting students who are victims of academic backwardness. In these little sycophants’ quest to continue their ploy unabated, they regularly purvey negative tittle-tattle to the Chairman of our beloved Party about some ideological brothers, but such is not surprising when one draws a parallel in history zeroing on the Russian Revolution. One can remember many things from the anal of the Russian Revolution. One remembers the excommunication and berating of comrade Leon Trotsky and other positive forces by Joseph Stalin because they were truthful to the original intent of the revolution; one also remembers the breaking with the ideological canon of the Russian Revolution by Stalin and his legion of men. History has no shortage of examples that I can count to settle this matter, but I have chosen to be laconic.
Furthermore, when we see potential, talented, and ideologically disciplined brothers of our party not only isolated from its activities but also branded as reactionaries who are on a “popularity spree” and thus “fighting the party”, we realize that there are fifth columnists in the ranks and file of the party who think that the active involvement of these brilliant militants and cadres in the affairs of the party runs completely opposed to the ploy of personal aggrandizement. We make no fuss with these saboteurs. We can assure them that in whatever we do, in and out of the walls of the “Lux in Tenebris”, we will forever remain the unapologetic defenders of ‘Massescracy’, democratic centralism, etc.
It is not surprising to me that our party is fuming in the culture of “personality cult”. This dangerous mindset that has been ordained by historical gatecrashers who are misleaders of our party has introduced this spoils system in our noble institution, especially as regards serving in leadership. Today, those who enjoy the oxygen of leadership should bootlick the Chairman or appear to be bootlicking the Chairman; anything on the contrary cost one his/her position. Such revisionist tendency is plunging the party in the gulf of nothingness. History is replete with examples that one can learn from in understanding how dangerous such tendency is, taking into consideration how it has destroyed many revolutionary institutions.
However, before I get into the principle objective of this piece, permit me to take a degree of your reading time to pay homage to some of our fallen heroes and heroines who with courage, obstinacy, commitment, and honesty exposed their chests for the bullets in order to maintain the sacrosanctity of our Vanguard Students Unification Party. During their time of struggle for academic freedom, social justice, and peace at the nation’s premier institution of learning, they paid the ultimate prize thus ushering in this current political dispensation we are today enjoying in the motherland. Let us remember the martyr Comrades Michael G.S. Dolo, founding chairman of the Vanguard Party; Frederick Gobawolee, first standard bearer of our Vanguard Student Unification Party. Furthermore, our respect in this light goes to the soul of comrade Swanzy Elliot, who simultaneously and concomitantly served as the head of the tripartite section (Politburo, Central Committee and General Congress) of our Vanguard Student Unification Party, and is credited for crafting the word “Massescracy”. Not forgetting Irene Nimpson, Momolu Lavala, Weewee Debbah, Wuo Garbe Tappia, Benedict Garlawolu, etc. all of whom are men and women of glorious memory who were in the forefront of the people’s struggle under the auspices of our Vanguard Student Party.
The revolutionary historical and ideological credentials which our party boasts of wouldn’t have been possible without the resilience of those courageous men and women who confronted the backward and defunct True Whig Party, and established the first Pan African militant mass based students’ Movement in Liberia on October 20, 1970. With the understanding that the many social contradictions in the Republic at that time would have had a negative effect on the learning environment at the University of Liberia, the founding fathers of SUP engrossed in their consciousness the virtue of altruism which did not limit their advocacy and agitation to the premises of the University of Liberia. The party quest for academic freedom, social justice and peace was also extended to the administrative running of the Liberian state. This is why when one flips the political history of Liberia, SUP’s fight against the de facto one party oligarchy (True Whig Party), Doe’s criminal cartel, and Taylor’s despotism is recorded and given the highest quality of importance.
Unfortunately, the status quo of our party is a certified disappointment, national and internationally nightmare, and a callous historical distortion of the true intent of our founding fathers. Instead of continuing the legacy of our forebears, our party has been hijacked by in-built sellouts and revisionist mercenaries who are desecrating its revolutionary credentials, and thus consigning it to the status of a stunted movement that hovers on the brink of collapse. High level of moral bankruptcy and doing the bidding for the administration of the University of Liberia at the disadvantage of the struggling students is the rule rather than the exception. The current leadership of SUP is a full swing contrast of our cherished revolutionary value; it does not seek the general interest of the masses of the student, but is preoccupied with mortgaging the interest of the students and thus selling-out to authorities of the University of Liberia. The Party is no longer a pro people institution that will continuously sharpen the social contradictions which are intentionally created by bureaucrats who have no commitment to advance the people’s children at the University of Liberia. The current SUP is now a cartel of deceits, self-aggrandizement, and hurdling ambition. When one looks at the many intricacies, complexities and challenges students are confronted with at the University of Liberia, a question comes to mind: Is there still a party call SUP at the University of Liberia? On the available evidence that I have reviewed one gets the feeling that SUP does not exist on the campuses of the University of Liberia.
This is why as a conscious militant of the party; I am excusing myself from the celebration of the party’s 46th Anniversary. I have realized that there is nothing to celebrate thus far, and that the celebration is an annual jamboree meant to profiteer and amass funds from individuals who loot the coffers of the state. How come we criticize these individuals in the close and prostrate before them in the open just to racket funds from them? In the midst of the many social contradictions that are only meant to sabotage the quest of the masses to attain tertiary education in their own country of equal citizenship, it is worthless to have a social jamboree that will have no bearing on the challenges the students are confronted with at the university.
Instead of joining the reckless social merry making and banditry, I will sit and have a sober reflection on the backwardness of the University of Liberia. Instead of celebrating the party’s anniversary with its leadership that is in bed with the oppressors and imperialist forces, I will choose to read about the history of sellouts in revolutionary institutions. Instead of winning and dinning and pretending that all is rosy at the University of Liberia, I will continue my journey of educating the masses of the students about their rights and privileges, and the need to demand for them, because it will never be voluntarily given by the oppressors. In history, it has been the aim of the oppressive forces to keep the oppressed people in poverty and extreme ignorance while they (oppressors) live in abundance. It is a truism that the backward elements have it at the back of their minds that when the masses of the people are living in wretched existence, they (the oppressors) will continue to direct and control the masses’ destiny.
What is the significance of celebrating an anniversary when over ten thousand of our compatriots are still out of school because they cannot afford to pay US$ 4.00 per credit hour? Look around you and see how the university is practically empty. Our people are being denied education and you are here glamorous about anniversary celebration? What happened to the financial aid program from the University of Liberia Students Interim Leadership (ULSIL)? Has it been abandoned by the leaders of ULSIL because of travel opportunity to the United States of America? Why is the party not prioritizing the wellbeing of the student masses but rather concerned about selling T-shirts to the students at the price of L$ 150.00 LRD for anniversary celebration? Is the party not concerned that it has not succeeded in any advocacy in recent time? Instead of joining your unnecessary celebration, these are issues and concerns I will busy myself informing the students about.
It makes no sense for SUP to celebrate anniversary when critical infrastructures at the University of Liberia are in deplorable condition while the offices of President, Vice Presidents for Administration, Academic Affairs, Public Relation, Students Affairs, etc. are swimming in the cesspool of thousands of United States Dollars every fiscal period. Dr. Emmett A. Dennis’s office actual expenditure for fiscal year 2015/2016 was US$ 451, 281.00 while the university’s 2015/2016 objective of improving ICT Infrastructure and Systems as well as continuing renovation and repairs of critical infrastructure could not be achieved due to quote on quote “lack of funding”. This is complete contradiction. Our recent high school graduates are being denied admission to the state-run University of Liberia because the false bourgeoisies want to curb the influx of students at the university. They parochially run with the believe that the increment in the number of students will lead to massive consciousness in the Liberian society which will serve as a threat to the quest of the ruling class and elite to continuously hold onto political and economic power. Over eight thousand candidates wrote the University’s entrance exam but the results were tempered with and the administration released a report that says not more than two thousand students made a pass in the exam. To our outmost surprise, when many of the junior comrades began challenging the result of the exam, it proved the contrary.
The dormitory at Fendall cannot be occupied by the students of the university because the huge price tag cannot correspond with their economic status. Students struggle every day to commute to Fendall due to lack of buses. The outdated Electronic Data Processing Center (EDP) is contributing to the probation of many students every semester. There is lack of sufficient arm chairs on the main campus of the university. The registration process is very tedious, and leads to the absence of students from their classes. The science laboratories especially the Chemistry and Biology labs are antiquated; libraries at the university are not well equipped to meet the research needs of students in this technologically contemporary epoch.
The SUP that I know is not concerned about these social contradictions, but is rather obsessed with anniversary celebration. SUP in its revolutionary garment only celebrates when the student masses are victorious and kicking well in their academic sojourn. SUP does not celebrate when there are compounded contradictions that are hindering the holistic advancement of the student masses. What we can say to those who are derailing the highly revolutionary political history of our party is that, go ahead and celebrate in your arrogance, greed, and selfishness; we will continue to be in the vanguard of the people’s struggle. Celebrating along with you will be like joining in the celebration of the masses’ defeat.
In our quest for societal transformation, aluta the struggle continues!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!