GBARNGA, Bong – President George Weah says he wants Liberians to embrace the government’s quest to connect all parts of the country with paved roads.
He said when the country is connected by roads, there will be economic recovery and citizens will no longer have difficulties travelling from one point of the country to another.
Weah was speaking in Gbarnga over the weekend during a brief welcoming ceremony held in his honor.
“During the campaign, I promised that when you elect me as president, I will work to build your roads; I will pay the WASSCE fees for your children. That is what I am trying to do,” Weah said.
He frowned at those he said are bent on criticizing every initiative of the government.
“What do you want? Because everything we do seems to be problem,” Weah said. He continued: “If you don’t want roads, tell me you don’t want roads and tell me what you want, so I can go look for it.”
Weah’s complaints about critics followed public condemnations about two loan agreements that the government has negotiated to pave hundreds of roads in the country.
One of the loans was negotiated with Eton Private LTD, a Singaporean firm wanting to provide US$536 million to Liberia. The other agreement was with EBOMAF, a Burkinabe construction firm that intends to raise US$426 million for the work.
Some critics of the government have said it is too soon for a government that has spent barely six months in office to embark on such major loans. Others are questioning the mechanisms that will be put in place by the government to manage the loans to ensure accountability.
In a related development, most of the Bong County Legislative Caucus did not attend the welcoming visit of the president to Gbarnga. Representative Marvin Cole of the Coalition for Democratic Change was the only member of the caucus in attendance.
Senator Henry Yallah, the chair of the caucus, said the superintendent, Esther Walker, did not inform them about Weah’s visit to the county.
“The tradition is that when the president is coming to the county, the superintendent will write the caucus or communicate with them through the chairperson so that they are aware. For us, we were not informed,” Yallah told a local radio station in Gbarnga on Monday.
Walker could not say whether or not she informed the caucus about the visit of the president to the county; however, she said “there is a planned meeting” called by the minister of internal affairs with her and members of the Bong County Legislative Caucus.
The rift between the Bong lawmakers and the executive branch is likely related to allegations that the superintendent has dismissed chiefs in the county.
Featured photo by Moses Bailey