Alfred P.B. Kiadii
Colonizing Liberia was the objective of President George Weah’s trip to two former French colonies in Senegal and Morocco before he visited with the imperialist behemoth herself France. Everything was done as per plans as he visited the two to get briefing before going for the formal admittance program in Paris. He thinks mortgaging the republic to Paris is the payback to the country in which he launched his professional career.
The syndicate is so obvious that it takes an effortless thought to read through it. If this was not the purpose of the visit one wonder why will Weah choose to visit Paris when he has not officially presented a concrete policy prescription which embodies his vision for the homeland, except the few sound bites and one line quote captured on the radio and in the newspaper about vainglorious promises. In addition, it can be no coincidence that Weah elected to visit two French former colonies before meeting France’s President Emmanuel Macron. This reveals the political shenanigan is in full throttle.
In a brazen show of support for the imperial adventurism of Paris, Weah prostrated on his belly at the Elysee Palace in a scandalous bridge of diplomatic protocol to finally seal the deal. Invariably, the occasion was a perfect opportunity to sanction Frances’s exploitation of the working class and the peasant masses and the plundering of the resources of the state under the guise of opening the country for business. The Liberian leader invariably told the French to just bring capital and pretend like you came to invest in order for so the Liberian people to not uncover the scheme.
Throughout his speech in France, President Weah repeated the slogan ‘Liberia is opened for business.’ If that statement doesn’t sum the height of cluelessness on the part of him than I don’t know what does. Liberia has always been opened for business since the plantation Firestone descended on the homeland from the United States of America in 1926. But the question we asked is: who has the business benefitted? Certainty, not the people, but the ruling class and its complements of the compradore-bourgeoisie.
As extremely neoliberally infectious as former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was, at no time did she so egregiously embarrass the republic in a foreign land like Weah did just in a month. Firstly, the puppet President of the banana republic of Liberia doesn’t know how to diplomatically address a press briefing and a bilateral discussion. What he should have articulated during the latter was what he said during the former. He made a good entertainer for the white supremacists, as they take extreme pleasure in black puppet embarrassing themselves on the international stage. Additionally, they found it fascinating that Africa has produced another Jean Bedel Bokassa or Idi Amin or Mobutu (a leader with no original thought and ignorant).
Unlike during the scramble for Africa from 1884-1885, Paris doesn’t have to wage militaristic incursion or use subterranean tactic to colonize Liberia. Weah has told them to just bring capital and Liberia will surrender her sovereignty. By his conduct, he promised to ensure the working class becomes wage slaves to the multinational corporations of Paris.
Suffice this to understand why President George Weah said his ‘most urgent and imperative agenda’ is granting Liberian citizenship to people of non-Negro descent, it was the first diktat Paris ordered him to implement before she starts her exploitation of the republic. That is why Weah did not say anything meaningful at the first state of the nation address but was bold on emphasizing on property rights and citizenship for people of non-Negro descent, which is far removed from the collective interests of the masses of the people who thought he would have emphatically stated meaningful program geared at extricating the republic from the current economic depression.
I want to remind President Weah that Francophone Africa is still reeling from the scars of France’s imperialism. ‘During the last 50 years, a total of 67 coups happened in 26 countries in Africa, 16 of those countries are French ex-colonies, which means 61% of the coups happened in Francophone Africa.’ This means Paris has undermined the unity and development of Africa more than any other imperialist power.
In a shocking wave of confessions, former President Chirac averred: ‘Without Africa, France will slide down into the rank of a third [world] power.’ Similarly, former President Metternich before him stated: ‘Without Africa, France will have no history in the 21st century.’
Today, after 50 years of independence, approximately fourteen African countries are paying colonial deposit 85% percent of their foreign reserve into France’s Central Bank. Meanwhile, Togo and thirteen other francophone African countries still pay colonial tax to France.
Worst of it all, this colonial exploitation put 500 billion United States dollars in the treasury of France every year from Africa. Yet Paris pretends as if she is aiding Africa.
While the enlightened President of Ghana is beseeching African countries to take charge of their own affairs, President George Weah went to France and virtually asked her to colonize Liberia. He has essentially left the nation’s traditional slave master in search of a new slave master. Our sovereignty has been sold.
Weah is not conversant with the fact that foreign policy is an offshoot of domestic policy, and not the other way around. A nation’s foreign policy is predicated on its national interest. The national interest of a nation is its goal, objectives, whether in the military, economic and political realms. It is based on the pursuit of the national interest that nations formulate their foreign policy. The National interest doesn’t exist in isolation of domestic policy objectives. The domestic policy objectives of a state are its national interests that are sold by its diplomats as the foreign policy.
Aside from selling our sovereignty to France, it is unclear what the mission of President Weah to France was. The big question which has not been answered is what he presented as the republic’s national interest when he has not formulated a plan.
Most likely, political pundits have concluded that the domestic disarray in the government has extended on the international stage. That is why President Weah violated all diplomatic norms when he openly read a long speech begging France to make Liberia her sphere of influence.
In diplomacy, actions speaks louder than words. It is done. The deal has been concluded. Liberia has been handed to France. Colonization is in full swing. The working class and the peasant masses will be exploited. The great economic carnage is to commence. Hence, he formally made France the new slave master and colonial patron of Liberia.
The nation is duped; the people have been robbed. No real sign of change is on the horizon. The CDC agitated for state power because of its love for the blue light convoy and the trappings of power. Nothing is going to change in the foreseeable future. The nation is dogged in another quagmire. Change is now a chain which has imprisoned the people.
Kiadii studies Political Science with emphasis in Public Administration at the University of Liberia. He is a social and political critic, and the secretary General of the Movement for Social Democratic Alternative (MOSODA). He can be reached on Cell +233552176627 and [email protected]