MONROVIA – Liberians decided to beat their weapons into plowshares when they signed unto the Accra Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) on August 18, 2003, thus ending 14 years of brutal carnage. On that fateful day, the Liberian leaders made a solemn and strong pledge in Accra, Ghana, to end the brutal civil war by signing the CPA which was the outcome of three months of negotiations. By their signatures, the leaders, among other things, promised to never allow the country go to war with itself again, and that Liberians would never allow the use of their territory for war against their neighbors. Tuesday, August 18, 2020 marked exactly 17 years after the signing of the historic instrument that gave Liberians another opportunity to rise from the ashes of destruction. A signatory to the CPA, Senator Conmany Wesseh has cautioned Liberians against reverting to the past.
According to Senator Wesseh, recent events in the country are raising fears against which the government of President George Manneh Weah must take appropriate actions.
“They are the growing violent incidents around the midterm senatorial elections. The legislature and all political actors have a role for the sustaining of genuine peace,” the River Gee County lawmaker said Tuesday, when he delivered a Special Statement on the 17th Anniversary of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.
Recalling the historic role that Liberians themselves played in ending their civil war and maintaining the peace for the past 17 years, Senator Wesseh said, the people of Liberia must be proud of themselves that they have been keeping the pledge for peace.
“We, the people, should therefore celebrate that peace have won against war,” Senator Wesseh averred, noting however, that in order to continue the victory of peace over war, Liberians must never allow any of their institutions or individual leaders to be so intolerant as to force the citizens to choose a foreign country to live as refugees fearing for their safety.
“We must continue to freely, organized ourselves to pursue our political, religious and other wishes, ambitions, interests and beliefs; and we must express our views on all matters without fear, but guided by patriotism, truth and civility,” he cautioned.
Meanwhile, Seantor Wesseh has proposed for the Legislature to enact a National Day of Peace to be celebrated on the 18th of August each year as a working holiday.
“On that day, throughout the country, there should be programs of thanksgiving, of peace education emphasizing ‘never again to war’ based on the causes and lessons of the Liberian civil war, and of peace festivals, cultural, sporting and other activities,” Senator Wesseh said.
He stated that the creation of a special national recognition for peace which could be done in two categories at separate ceremonies – one to be named the Legislative Medal for Peace to be awarded annually by the National Legislature to those who the country’s Legislative Leadership may consider to have contributed in special ways to the promotion and maintaining of peace in Liberia; and the other category could be called the State Medal of Peace to be awarded by the President of the Republic of Liberia to those individuals or organizations that have made extraordinary contributions to the promotion and maintaining of peace in Liberia.
“I believe that by taking these legislative actions in remembrance of the CPA, we could be reminding ourselves, the people we represent and those who stood by Liberia especially those whose blood and sweat made us to be alive today that we made a promise for peace to keep and vow to renew in the best interest of our children and future generations,” Senator Wesseh stated.