Monday, December 12, 2005

Liberia: A Confused and Chauvinistic George Weah

A tragic weekend it was for Nigerians, particularly the families affected by the latest airliner crash in Nigeria: the third in number and the second in fatality this year. How much grief can the people bear? My weekend was a mess, spent under nerve-racking anxiety and suspense trying to ascertain that all is well with my family and associates in Nigeria. Well, my family is safe, that I have confirmed, and none of the names on the manifest looked familiar.

My condolences and sympathies to the families that lost loved ones in the accident.

As I await my laptop to boot up this morning- looking through the patio door, quietly savoring the aroma oozing from my coffee mug, and acknowledging the works of nature in the snow-covered landscape of my neighborhood- I pondered in my sub-conscious mind the possibility of Nigeria and Africa being under an evil spell given the pathetic conditions of the African nations.

“Nah, it is not likely”, I said to myself. “These nations have been poorly managed, that is why”, I rationalized.

Besides, I don’t want to entertain any negative thoughts because I need to cast off the spirit of gloom and hopelessness that had wrecked my weekend. I switched off the thought and moved over to my computer.

As I grappled to handle the multitude of information synthesized on my news aggregator, the BBC coverage of the latest antics of Liberia’s George Weah caught my attention.

Supporters turned violent after “Mr Weah addressed several hundred supporters, alleging the election had been rigged and saying his rival would not be sworn in.”

According to the BBC coverage, he promised to block the inauguration of Johnson-Sirleaf as president. Ms John-Sirleaf is an acclaimed technocrat and the declared winner of the recent presidential bye-election she and Weah contested in Liberia. The election was well monitored and judged free and fair by most observers. If sworn in January, John-Sirleaf will be the first female elected president in Africa.
"There is no victor for now, and I say there will be no inauguration in the country until the world gets together and finds a means for a peaceful resolution to the problem," the BBC quotes George Weah.
“What a pathetic jerk”, I said aloud.

All the respect I’d for George Weah quickly dissipated. I’d thought given his stature- as a highly successful international soccer star, his philanthropic gestures, and the popularity he enjoys with the Liberian youths- that he would be a beacon of hope and source of inspiration to the disfranchised people of his country and Africa as a whole. How wrong I was.

Based on his attitude and statements thus far, it appears Weah is confused, swallow-minded, egoistic, chauvinistic, and intellectually retarded. He portends a present danger to the fragile peace in Liberia, and should be shunned by all well meaning Liberians.

“Well, Africa may indeed be under an evil spell”, I said to myself…correcting the initial assertion I’d made earlier about Africa being possessed by evil forces, the continent will need mega infusions of divine and all sorts of interventions to break free.

Now it is going to be a Herculean task to arrest and discard the sour taste of hopelessness I’ve had in my mouth all weekend.

No thanks to a confused high-school dropout-turned-politician.