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What "Peace" means in Liberia
   
 
 
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What "Peace" means in Liberia

 
Wednesday, 02 October 2013 09:56
 
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by Emmanuel Zawolo Suah
EPOS Notepad

 

For most Liberians, peace is not just the absence of the guns. The actual meaning of peace goes beyond all aspects of life. To a larger extend, some people define peace as the presence of equal opportunities and justice; improved health care, good infrastructure, food security and better educational system. To tackle these issues, the Government of Liberia launched a participatory approach called the Poverty Reduction Strategy or PRS in 2008 following unprecedented nationwide consultations. The PRS as an opened, collaborative and peaceful roadmap for national development supposed to also provide the opportunities where Liberians can amicably resolve their differences.

According to her Excellency Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, reducing poverty is not just something the government can do alone but requires the collect tasks of every Liberian regardless of tribe, age, groups or gender. While this government is striving to create an enabling environment development, most Liberians are not sitting idle; waiting for central government to provide all their needs and wants.

Most communities in the rural areas only need some kind of assistance from anywhere or government to build their capacity to foster some of their community development. It’s against this backdrop that some communities are undertaking self help school construction and road network projects. This is evident by Gou, a remote Town in Bong County and Zeinpa in Nimba County just to name few.

Roads leading to these Towns are roughly impassable. In this 21st century, the citizens of Gou Town are building motor road with almost bare hands without support from anywhere. As for the Town of Zeinpa, it has remained inaccessible to vehicles since 1990. Even though the citizens continue to side brush their road but it still lies in a deplorable condition. Almost all the children in these towns have not seen what you called car. As for education, it’s still a day dream for children there.

There is an urgent need to buttress the efforts of these communities or this popular PRS may just linger as a mere dream. The dream for a child to live in safety, go to school with qualified teachers, get clean water and good medicine and study by electric light; and have food security is highlighted within the framework of the PRS remains rarely.

I think that roads are not built because the people are not educated. Schools are not built because the people are not educated. Majority of the population goes to bed with hunger because of the lack of education; to feel the impacts of peace at every level here, many Liberians want a holistic approach at all levels of society. A robust but friendly awareness must be created. Where food security is strengthened, education opportunity reached the least child in the village and basic infrastructure and health care delivery system are improved. But except the high level of corruption and self aggrandizement in private and government sectors are minimized, these fine words may not be translated into the language of sustainable peace and development.


Last modified on Wednesday, 23 April 2014 09:47
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