Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Statement issued in Monrovia by Ibrahim Al-bakri Nyei ahead of the LINSU National Congress
For immediate release July 15, 2009
As we go through these experiences of reconciliation and transition to restore total peace and tranquility to our country, we have been shocked by a major situation which puts us at a crossroad to determine the next direction of our country. The findings and report released by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission have met serious challenges and have sparked controversial debates in the country. It is important that the students of Liberia and the academic community provide true direction and intellectual leadership on this issue.
The report released by the TRC has interestingly been interpreted with sentimental and parochial interests thereby making it difficult for the illiterate Liberians to determine what destiny the country is headed for. I therefore call on the youth and student community to thoroughly read and research all related documents of the TRC void of prejudices, interests and biases. This will help the ordinary Liberians who have always been the victims of misinformation, disinformation, and political crises in understanding the state of reconciliation and peace in our national patrimony.
Interestingly, this has come at a time when the students of Liberia under the banner of the Liberia National Student Union are heading for a national convention to elect new code of officers and carve plans and strategies for the student community. I also call on the Congress Preparatory Committee of the Liberia National Student Union to include the report of the TRC as an agenda item during the plenary of the National Congress so that the student community can deliberate the report and take a decisive position in the interest of national peace and unity.
For the first time over decades we as students of Liberia will be assembling in the provincial city of Gbarnga to attend the National Congress of the Liberian National Student Union. As we move towards this Congress, I recommend the following:
• That we assemble peacefully and ensure that all activities of the Congress be guided by the constitution of the Union and all of the Memorandum of Understandings that were signed to ensure the hosting of this Congress; and that we work to ensure that the Congress observe the tenets of democracy for a peaceful deliberation in the interest of the student community, yea the nation
• That the Ministry of Youth and Sports, the Ministry of Education and the National Elections Commission fully participate in this process, and monitor it to the end to ensure that all of the MOUs signed are implemented to the fullest. In the absence of that, there are great fears that the LINSU Congress may end like the Federation of Liberian Youth general assemblies that were disrupted in Gbarnga and Kakata in 2007
Finally, I want to reaffirm my support and full endorsement of the candidacy of M. Boakai Jaleiba, Jr. for the Presidency of the Liberian National Student Union. Mr. Jaleiba has for the past years been a consistent and result-focus student activist and leader whose astute advocacy and leadership has accrued immeasurable gains to the youth and student community.
LINSU needs a vibrant and progressive leadership that will advocate for the advancement of the students of Liberia and provide the necessary leadership for their future. We believe that Mr. Jaleiba is up to the task of providing such leadership. I therefore call on all progressive student activists and leaders to support and rally around Mr. Jaleiba and his team for the revitalization of LINSU, and a vibrant and decisive leadership for the student community.
Signed: Ibrahim Al-bakri Nyei
Department of Political Science
Camp Johnson Road