Some say I have betrayed my mentor. Others are saying that I am afraid to speak the truth to a government that spurned me. I have said to them and I will say it now, I cannot speak on political issues especially issues that have the proclivity to put my integrity at stick and dreg me into political controversies. However, I am not writing as an awardee for an international award. But simply as a young patriotic Liberian and one of the mentees to Vandalark R. Patricks.
A mentor is one who teaches you helpful not harmful moral and societal doctrines. A mentor takes you from the dark and puts you in light. A mentor exhumes your talents and shows you to the world. A mentor inculcates your mind with patriotism and love for mankind. A mentor advices you whenever you thread the path of destruction. A mentor cements your mind intellectually and prepares you for academic battles. These are all what Vandalark R. Patricks taught me. He is an unsullied species, with an indisputable love for his country. That is why I proudly called him mentor!
When I was in West Point all alone speaking for the rights of my peers, he provided directions and he still does. He always told me to speak from my sense of conscience and conviction and never should I allow people to use me as a stooge or scape-goat. He discovered be from the pool of irrelevance and brought me to an oasis of relevance. He indoctrinated me with courage and bravery and reminded me to always speak the truth even when the whole world is against me. Despite being in jail, he still provides his mentorship to me. No distance is so long for us to communicate. We speak whenever we want to and nothing is so powerful (excluding God) can stop both of us from doing so.
I am in solidarity with my mentor. I remain proudly and indelibly indebted to him and will resoundingly call him my mentor. If there is anyone who may want to question me for this, then you have the choice to take me to the court of jurisprudence or jurisdiction. If you also wish to face me in an academic fight to present your reasons why you think I should not call Vandalark my mentor, then you can take your pen and paper to do so.
My mentor is a Political Activist or Civil Society actor, and I am an Advocate. But that does not distinguish us. Both of us share one common goal. And that goal is respect and protection for human rights and a world inclusive of peace and security for everyone. We believe that the rights of people (men, women and children) should be respected and protected at all times and on every level of human growth.
VANDALARK’S ARREST AND DETENTION
On Tuesday, February 23 2016, I received calls from friends and good-will people informing me about the arrest. I initially said I would not say or write a word about Patricks’ arrest considering my orientation. But my conscious could not just set me free, and I am compelled by ideological consciousness to write this piece. From the day I changed my Facebook profile picture as a way of creating awareness for the unconditional release of ‘Mango Sago’ (as he was affectionately called during his days at Cuttington University), I swore to relentlessly voice out among the many voices yearning for his release. And I do not care how weak and threadbare opponents to this #freeVandalark campaign may want to interpret me. I know a very few of them will say I am going political, but saying it in my presence will be more momentous.
To conclude, I hope the Government of Liberia will drop charges against Vandalark Patricks; respecting Articles 15 and 17 of the 1986 Constitution and the Table Martin Declaration. Our President – H. E. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has won so many accolades internationally. Therefore, Chris Massaquoi and Benedict Sannoh should make sound decisions that will open more corridors for many other awards by our President instead of defaming her accolades, thus allowing people to critique the basics for which she was presented all those awards she has won over the years. PleaseinterveneMadamPresident!!!!
#freeVandalark #freeVandalark #freeVandalark #freeVandalark