By J.N. Williams
WHILE GHANAIAN LAWMAKERS GRANT CITIZENSHIP TO BLACK AMERICANS, LIBERIAN LAWMAKERS ARE REJECTING NATURAL BORN LIBERIANS WHO RESIDE AND WORK ABROAD IN THE WEST.
The Republic of Ghana has granted and will continue to grant dual citizenship to natural-born American citizens – people we called African-Americans or black Americans. One would wonder why Ghana is not resettling refugees from Somalia, Chad, and other poor African nations to make them Ghanaian citizens. Instead, Ghana is making black Americans, born and raised in the U.S. and with no direct ethnic ties to Ghana, citizens under a dual citizenship program.
In general, granting citizenship to black Americans and other black people from Europe and Canada is a strategic move and sound public policy on the part of the lawmakers and the leadership of Ghana. It is also strategic because it makes common sense, economic sense, sociological sense, philosophical sense, and above all, it will give Ghana more geopolitical leverage internationally and in U.S. politics and economics.
What Ghana is doing relative to the United States is what Liberia supposed to be doing given the historical ties between both nations. This effort is largely the vision of the Ghanaian parliament, which is the equivalent of the Liberian Legislature – both the Senate and the House of Representatives. The only difference is Ghana has intelligent, smart, visionary, selfless, and exposed lawmakers while Liberia has the opposite or contrary.
Liberian lawmakers are rejecting their fellow natural-born Liberians who are educated, are living and working in the United States at various levels of the American labor market landscape. It is so sad that the oldest and “first” independent African nation has a bunch of myopic people who make its laws. No country, including Liberia, can improve when the lawmakers are the closed-minded type we have in Liberia.
Every day, I hear about all these criticisms against President George M. Weah and the CDC -led administration. Of late, I realized that President Weah should have no blame if we are a serious people and nation. The poor governance and economical, as well as labor market problems in Liberia, should not be painted or put on President Weah alone. Our weakness as a nation is rooted in the fact that we have a pathetic, corrupt, and unintelligent legislature. If we have a legislature that has qualified, experienced, and ethically competent individuals that know what their role and functions are, no president and his/her administration will drag Liberia in the mud, as we have seen over past decades.
For example, former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, her administration officials, and family could do whatever they wanted to do, including enriching themselves without any form of accountability because we had the same exact legislature we have today under President Weah. If Liberians are serious about real change and progress, they should condemn, recall, or protest against their legislators rather than putting the ills of the nation on President Weah.
President Sirleaf would have stood up and done much better than some imagine if we had an ethnically balanced legislature. President Weah will be compelled to strengthen up and do better if we have an ethically balanced legislature as well. The reason is, the only people that can technically sack a president (via impeachment) and his government from office are the lawmakers. But from the look of things, ours in Liberia are not only sick and corrupt; they also don’t get it. Therefore, Liberia is hospitalized and needs oxygen. I want to see when Liberians will condemn their corrupt, greedy, do-nothing, and unpatriotic lawmakers.
Liberians should STOP PUTTING EVERY, AND ALL BLAMES ON WEAH. They should put the real blame on the incompetent lawmaker they elected and call lawmakers.
President Weah has the right to appoint whomever he wants; it is up to the Liberian Senate to approve that the appointment of that person. Without such approvals, no one can take office or hold such a position. This also applies to the passing of annual national budgets and other legislations. So what all this folly about blaming President Weah about. Liberians should blame their ill-informed lawmakers who confirmed the people you Liberians called “incompetent” officials. Leave Weah alone if you are not courageous enough to deal with your incompetent representatives and senators.
About the Author:
Williams is a Liberian citizen, a Catholic educated public philosopher and a known U.S. trained labor market, workforce development, strategic management, and institutional governance expert.