Liberia: 14 Years After The Blood, Our Nation’s Heritage Remains Undefined”


It was once said that if civilization fails, society crumbles.

It was on a cool evening of November 17, on a Thursday, when I encountered a friend who told me the story of his broken left hand and why he had to live with the price for the rest of his life.

By: Elijah Manyon, [email protected], Contributing Writer

I was shocked upon meeting such brother that wonderful evening. His story left me a remarkable experience of which I am proud to write about today.

Henry was just about 15 years old when he was forcefully admitted to fight as a child soldier. He told me in his experience that being a child soldier, there were times when he slaughtered women without regards to his mother.

There were times when he along with other soldiers scraped people naked, leading them through streets corners and forcing them to do what was against their will.

Finally, Henry bought me a book of reflection, when he said, “I even killed my own mother, because the soldiers were hunting after my father and could not get him, so they made me end up killing my mother”.

“they told me that we should open her heart and eat. Because that’s the only way I could become braver to fight. “So, with no option, I killed my only mother who was just about her 40s.”

Liberia’s fourteen years of civil war destroyed minds and ruined properties. But no such destruction is greater than the loss of our cultural heritage.

As a child way back, I was told by my native mother in our native language that if you climb a hill and falls, do not look back.

But if you stumble your foot upon an object before falling, wake up and look at where you have stumbled upon.

Today the nation’s democracy has been sold.

Liberia’s culture has been misplaced. The individual person no longer counts.

Our history of the brutal civil war states that it is because two tribes rose against each other, that’s why war broke out in Liberia.

That history has left one thing out.

Our Leaders’ greed for power and the misplacement of cultural norms and values.

Since then, no one cares to ever correct or rewrite our history in such a way that reconciles the country. It is because of this belief that one tribe rose against another that has left an entirely remarking enmity between the Gio/Mano and Krahn tribes respectively.

Many believed that if a Gio man rules the nation, another war will entrench the country.

Where is our hidden and undefined heritage?

Even after all those years of violence, there has not been much done to secure the future of those youths who we refer to as future leaders.

Drugs is all over the place and addiction is taking its own side of legality.

If this age of civilization has indeed failed us, then our society has already crumbled. But if not, what are we waiting for to check the price of rebuilding and restoring this nation?

Young people who should be securities of the country’s properties have become agents of various political parties, spreading violence and hit messages everywhere.

Even as that, the leaders themselves who serve in those political parties continue to plant these young people to carry out violence.

This one is no longer about a specific tribe rising against the other. These are young people of all diversities and ethnicities who are replicating the cold images of the fourteen years of blood.

If our policies where so sensitive enough, they would strive to address these issues first, before exceeding to the signing of international instruments.

The democracy for the ordinary people has been bought by the wealthy class who no longer see their fellowmen as equal, but inferior.

These people provide solutions that save their lives and keep them healthy and fit, while the indigent suffer from health inequities and starvation.

If this is the case, let death and shorter lives be the manifesto on which the people will vote. Then government will now be transparent.

But if this is not the case, then Liberia must recheck the price to reclaim their democracy which was long sold.