Is George Oppong Weah a threat to Liberia’s Democracy?
Liberia’s world best soccer star George Oppong Mannah Weah was named African, European and World Best Soccer Player of the Year in 1995 and has since become a leading humanitarian and politician in his country, Liberia. Of all names, Weah name stands tall. He’s the true son of Liberia. A pacifist that beliefs that his people deserve better, especially after sixteen years of civil war. Mr. Weah is an example of what some Liberians should be. A man who dedicates his entire career and life to his people and the game we American called “soccer” but around the world, where it’s commonly called “FOOTBALL.”
Born on October 1st, 1966, in Monrovia, Liberia, George Oppong Mannah Weah became a soccer star in Paris, France, and in Lisbon, Italy. Not to mention with all his soccer skills, Mr. Weah is also fluent in French, and Italian. The pinnacle of his career came when he was named the African, European and World best soccer star of the Year in 1995. Ever since then, as a prominent millionaire, Weah had used his resources and efforts to better some of the living conditions of his people.
2017, is a year for Weah, some may say. Weah had contested Liberia’s Presidency, slightly losing to President Sirleaf in 2005. There are rumors that the actual election was not truly fair. Some say, he won, and Ellen was elected by the hands who seems to sometimes controlled Liberia. But that’s history; it’s over with and done. Today is a new day. What matters is now, 2017. The future of Liberia belongs to those who are willing to protect democracy, hold their leaders accountable, and encourage oppositions’ voices without silencing them with bribes.
George Weah is the current contestant of the Congress for Democratic Change, simply known as CDC. The CDC is the one of the biggest political organization in Liberia. The CDC stands tall above all. Weah leads this oppositional party. As Weah hope grows, there are also little doubts from educated Liberians, living in the West, who think that his Vice Presidential choice, Jewel-Howard Taylor is a “RED FLAG” and a threat to Liberia’s democracy.
Jewel-Howard Taylor is the ex-wife of Liberia’s ex-warlord Charles Ghankay Taylor. Upon his removal from power, Mr. Taylor had promised his supporters, “God willing, I’ll be back.” Was this the moment, Charles Taylor was talking about? That his ex-wife, Jewel who has not dropped his last name would come to power on the back of George Weah’s Victory to plead his case? Who are we to judge Mrs. Taylor intent? But sane Liberians are scared and wants to know Weah, and his Vice President picked plans.
Some beliefs that Mrs. Jewel-Howard Taylor is using the “Taylor’s name” to gain political positions. Some also believe that the connection to Mr. Taylor is still there and she and Weah should never be trusted with the country. Democracy calls for debates, and those are questions that Weah and his Vice President picked needs to answer for curious Liberians. Liberia has come a long way. It has been twelve years of slow progress and illiberal democracy. Liberians are afraid of another civil war.
For most sound Liberians, anyone who bears the “Taylor’s name” or has had any association with the past Taylor’s administration has no right to come and govern Liberians again. Some say that they have had enough. Some say that Weah is a good man but made the wrong choice when it comes to his Presidential picked. It’s not up to us to judge Mrs. Taylor or Weah because, on October 10th, the Liberian people would go to the polls and vote their conscience. If it is a free, fair election, the winners would be determined, and every Liberian should rally around those winners and support their new leader to help better their country.