MONROVIA – A Liberian clergyman has observed that the growing wave of corruption and bad governance remain primary factors strangulating genuine and sustainable developments in post-conflict Liberia and imposing hardship on its citizens.
According to Pastor Amos Sayjleh, corruption in the public sector continues to deny citizens their fair share of the country resources that belong to all Liberians.
Pastor Sayjleh is the General Overseer of the Trinity Outreach Ministries in Tweh Farm on the Bushrod Island, outside Monrovia.
He observed that despite being the oldest African country, Liberia remains one of the poorest in the world.
He made these comments when he served as keynote speaker at the first graduation and closing exercises of the Greater Praise School in Brewerville, outside Monrovia on Sunday, July 31.
He spoke on the theme: “Learn well to live well”.
He emphasized that the nation is lacking infrastructure developments, not because it doesn’t have educated people, but because it has produced leaders who did not learned well.
“Corruption resulting from bad governance and misuse of public funds has undermined our national developmental agenda and the prosperity of our nation Liberia over the past two (2) decades. Our politicians have always raise our expectations and aspirations for the emancipation of this poor nation to truly become a land of liberty and prosperity for all but have always failed to do so because they did not learn well”.
Pastor Sayjleh maintained that learning well is not just to acquire knowledge, but to ensure that whatever knowledge acquired is used properly in a good manner that will benefit the society and not to be a cheat or a criminal to the very country that one was elected to serve.
He observed that almost two years ago, four auditors died mysteriously at the time an audit was being conducted on public funds entrusted to the regime by international partners.
According to him, the government that made a promise to uphold the constitution of the land, slapped the nation with a disappointing medical report, claiming that the deaths, though on three (3) separate scenes, were unnatural or accidental.
“What was more disappointing was the call of the government asking the poor citizens who can barely feed on one dollar a day to provide their own security by installing CCTV in their homes”.
Pastor Sayjleh maintained that the families of these four (4) deceased auditors are painfully mourning the loss of their love ones in silence for fear of being hunted.
“ I believed that these four (4) deceased auditors learned well and were determined to make the difference in a corrupt and evil society by ensuring that their professional ethics and moral values of honesty and integrity were not compromised for which they met their untimely death. Disgustingly, one year after the demise of those auditors, particularly in their death month anniversary, the month of October, our government hailed a young boy, EMMANUEL TOULU, of Nimba County as a hero of honesty or an integrity icon for returning US$50,000 which was lost by a business woman.”
“ While we all applauded that young boy for the high level of honesty he exhibited, it beats my imagination for the government to ignore the death month anniversary of those professionals who died during the discharge of their national duties”.
He stressed that the honesty exhibited by little Emmanuel which occurred in the same month of the death anniversary of the four (4) deceased auditors, was not accidental but to remind government of the need to repent by embracing honesty as a role model for good governance over bad governance and corruption.
“It was, therefore important for the government to memorialize the death anniversary of the four (4) deceased auditors in public recognition and commendation for their services to the nation at the time they celebrated Emmanuel for his honesty. The government insensitivity to this recognition has sent a message to the nation that she lacks interest in people of integrity and therefore the hailing of little Emmanuel for his honesty was a mere floor show.”
“I believe little Emmanuel understood the importance of what he did intentionally to send a message to the government and the public. In an interview with BBC, little Emmanuel said “itʼs good to be honest “. This is the message he passed to the government and everyone of us. I doubt if the government got the message”.
Pastor Sayjleh, however, urged the graduates and students to always be honest in whatever they do.
“As you continue your education sojourn Learn well by being honest, studious and diligent because one day this nation look up to you for its emancipation from poverty to prosperity, from corruption to good governance and the management of our national wealth and if you fail posterity will judge you.”
He urged the parents and instructors to ensure that their children and students learn well, and encourage them not only for academic excellence, but to ensure that they develop good moral values that will make them good leaders for tomorrow.
“With our collective efforts we can rescue our nation from the evil menace of corruption and bad governance. This nation is bleeding and does not need a “funfair” leader but a leader capable enough to transform this nation and provide a better future for our children”.
“The word “well “which is considered in this context as an adverb means a good and proper manner. It also means to act justly or rightly. With these definitions in mind, I want to urge you the students sitting under my voice particularly the graduates to learn well and to continue learning well. Whatever you learn today and how you learn will determine whom you will become tomorrow. If you learn to cheat in class to make a pass, you will become a cheat in the public office tomorrow, as the saying goes charity begins at home and ends abroad”.
“Let’s support our children’s education and help them to be good leaders for our nation by instilling good moral values in them, only then will this nation be transformed.”