Africa’s first female elected President, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf is celebrated by the world as a rock star and named one of the 100 most powerful women in the world by Forbes Magazine and received the Noble Peace Prize in 2011. Though the world celebrates this first African female President abroad, her countrymen at home see her differently and certainly not as the iconic relevance of her international stardom the world relishes upon her. President Sirleaf will be arriving back to Liberia from her participation at the 68th session of the General Assembly of the United Nations in New York to a protest at home just as New York protest organizers promised that the President will be greeted with protest upon her arrival to Liberia, an “Ellen Step-down Campaign” protest is gearing up in the Liberian capitol, Monrovia to greet the Liberian leader with a protest and call for her resignation.
According to the organizers of the “Ellen Step-down Campaign”, they are declaring October 9th, the day of President Sirleaf’s arrival in the country as “Black Wednesday”, vowing to greet the Liberian leader with a protest and call for her resignation. The group say they will attire in black to protest against the President and demand her resignation
With the threat of protest and demand for President Sirleaf’s resignation, will her arrival and the protest if staged, spill trouble for an already fragile peace and the country looms into disruption if the protesters insist on her resignation and the President too hold her ground a scenario Liberians might be fearing about their country as yet another dark cloud hangs over their beautiful country gripped by one trouble to the next since the infamous “1979 Rice Riot”?
Protest organizers say they are protesting against President Sirleaf and calling for her resignation because of endemic corruption, nepotism, and bad governance as well as her inability to govern, loosing the moral authority to run the country as public officials squander the wealth of the country at will and her children and family cluster in government and impunity patent for governance and allegiance to friends above the country and constitution and laws.
Beneath the international stardom President Sirleaf enjoys, at home was the “Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf” Liberians knew before her election in 2005 as Africa’s first female President when the world was swept away by the ‘frenzy of an African female President’. They knew and know her as one with a troubled and controversial past with deep root and a center-staged architect of Liberia’s 14 year civil war as she admitted giving US$10,000.00 to Charles Taylor, now convicted of war crimes and on record to be the sole lobbyist for United States support to Taylor’s rebel war when she addressed the U S Congress Sub-Committee on Africa on June 19, 1990 and the revelation by the widow of the late Gen Thomas Quiwonkpa told her countrymen during a debate with Liberian Information Minister Lewis Brown recently that “the 1985 coup was not her husband’s coup but “Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf’s who used desperate tactics to lured her husband to joining and leading 1985 coup after he rejected on other occasions to be a part of a coup to topple the late President Doe by showing the late General a naked photograph (apparently doctored) of his mother tied to a plane- something that triggered him to be a part of her coup.
It seemed it was just a matter of time that the world would get to know the “Ellen” Liberians knew and know before her election as first African female President, her election which would not become reality had she ended up in a second round in 2005 election with another candidate other than a mere football player and political neophyte who failed to listen and learn but hurriedly brushed off from the football field and told he was going to lead a broken country coming out of 14 years of war- the gamble electorates were not prepared to take and thought of giving President Sirleaf a second chance with the thought of doing better for the country.
President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, the international rock star might be loosing her assert and stock value downgraded, something the world was not prepare for when some Liberians staged a “corruption protest” against the Liberian President and call for her resignation at the United Nations, promising to stage continual protests until she resigns.
Again, Liberia is on the edge and it appears that Liberian leaders do not learn from their predecessors, many of whom ends are tragic and President Sirleaf too felled prey to this Liberian syndrome where their leaders see themselves invincible until the naturally reluctant and complacent people can take it no more and take matters into their own hands