New Democrat (Monrovia)

Liberia: Can the UP Scribe Stop Lewis Brown From Waking Up the 'Sleeping Giant'

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When Mr. Christopher Neyor, former chief executive officer of the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL) last April expressed astonishment about how over 2,000 inhabitants of a village in central Liberia were suffering abject poverty, his tirade sounded like one spewed by someone who freshly landed from Mars to Liberia, where in fact, he served as top official in past and present governments.

He was keynote speaker at the dedication of a modern flush toilet and two hand pumps, built in Pleemu town in Bong County by Checago Bright Foundation, saying: "This is what the Liberian government ought to be doing for the people.

"I know the resources that this country has. All the natural resources we have, over the years and now; I will accept no excuse for why we can not have in every village, every town, every community, access to clean drinking water. I refuse to accept that." But Mr. Neyor, while in influential positions over past years failed to voice concerns about the existence of abject poverty in rural areas including his own county as well as the slum in West Point where the head offices of the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC) that he was managing director of, towered.

Now we are forced to ask another 'why now', but this time to Unity Party Secretary General Mr. Wilmot Page, who is seeking the resignation of Information Minister Lewis Brown for being an "embarrassment" to the UP-led government.

"Information Minister Lewis Brown has undermined his credibility. He has gone overboard undermining his function. He has misled the Liberian people. What does he have to offer? He is no longer desirable," Mr. Paye, flanked by a horde of UP officials, cried at a press conference Wednesday.

But where was Mr. Paye when Lewis Brown campaigned comradely with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in Monrovia though he was seeking senatorial election for Montserrado County. Where was he when Mr. Brown served in topmost positions of ex-dictator Charles Taylor's government?

We may also ask where was the UP stalwart when Mr. Brown, during confirmation hearings, criticized the Ministry of Information as a "sleeping giant" and that he was prepared and ready to wake up and put to work

Where was he when former information minister Cletus Sieh rejected the reference to MICAT as "a sleeping giant", and described Mr. Brown's statement as "arrogant, unfortunate and uncivilized"

Where was Mr. Paye, my people, when New Democrat, following the confirmation of Mr. Brown, challenged him: "Pineapple, Time To Produce Thy Juice". We believe he should have voiced his concerns more than a year ago to preempt the damage he claims Mr. Mr. Brown, as information Minister, is causing the UP-led government. This is why it is prudent to heed that a stitch in time is better than nine or more succinctly said: Prevent is better than cure.

Stop crying over spilled milk, Mr. Paye, and brace yourself for more surprises.

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