President Weah Takes Campaign Deep Inside Rural Bong, Chiding Boakai Over Donated ‘Deathtrap’ Ferry
Gbarnga, Bong County - The President of the Republic and Standard Bearer of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) has broken another record: the first sitting President of Liberia to enter formerly unreachable communities of Liberia and giving Liberians, deep into the woods, a sense of belonging to Government and the Presidency.
Again the President excited hundreds of near-inaccessible rural residents, this time David-Ta, a deeply remote town in Fuarmah District, Bong County by entering the countryside village at the head of a sizable caravan of partisans, supporters and officials of his Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC).
The President’s entry of David-Ta was not only characterized by ululations and awe of the visibly amazed villagers; the President also took sober view of the social and economic conditions of the people. He bemoaned the people’s living conditions and promised to do something about it in his second term.
One of the situations that attracted the attention of the David-Ta visitors, mainly the President, was the antiquated ferry over the St. Paul River, which the citizens said was donated by the 12-year Vice President of Liberia in the former ruling Unity Party and current Standard-bearer of the party in the 2023 presidential elections.
The ferry, which in all account is a Java man epoch conveyor, is for years being used by citizens to transport themselves and vehicles from one side of huge St. Paul River to the other side.
President Weah and visitors to David-Ta community and other off-road towns and villages of Bong County were appalled when they saw the ferry that was donated by Mr. Boakai, who not only served the government for 45 years but as Vice President of Liberia for 12 years.
“I am totally downhearted and disappointed by what I am seeing—this ferry which I am told was donated by someone calling himself “Rescue One”, someone who started living on taxpayers’ monies when most of us here were calling rice ‘rae,’—or were not yet born,” said President Weah when he and the rural people interfaced in a jostling campaign rally.
“I wonder if this is how a ferry, or a rescue, is supposed to look like. Is this not a deathtrap and mass murder in disguise?” the President said, triggering loud giggling amongst the crowd.
“I thought we were in the Modern Age, and not Stone Age. I thought someone who, via taxpayers’ money, traveled around the world needed to know better and do better?” he continued, adding: “Someone begging for state power and calling himself rescuer built and donated a ferry here that is manually being pulled and hauled by human efforts and not machine?”
“Imagine these are the same people who want to be leaders! What much would it have cost them, for 12 years, to put a bridge here or a modern ferry using a motor engine which the people could have easily commuted themselves on.”
The President described as very sad the condition of the bridge and the failure of the former ruling government do better with the ferry and the condition of the people, lamenting how the Unit Party was careless and irresponsible in the management of the country for twelve years.
“You mean the UP Government could not put Bridge here? And let’s not forget; these are the very people coming back calling themselves rescuers. In fact, what and who are they rescuing?”
Having chided the former Vice President and his UP for setting up a deathtrap in the name of ferry, President Weah immediately instructed Finance and Development Planning Minister Samuel Tweah and the officials of the Martine Authority (LiMA) to take an immediate remedial action to save the situation.
“Mr. Finance Minister, please make sure that we take seize of this situation right away,” the President instructed his lieutenants, saying that it is not about the people’s vote but because the government still has a responsibility to its citizens, and above all, that it cares before, during and even after elections.
While Finance Minister Tweah is looking for the money to do a permanent bridge, President Weah mandated officials of the LiMA to use their influence to get a new ferry as soon as possible.
The CDC Standard-bearer thanked citizens of David-Ta for their love and commitment, saying that the government remains committed to working in their interest.