Monrovia — As the clamor for the election of competent and visionary lawmakers in the next dispensation who understand the three cardinal functions of a lawmaker, lawmaking, oversight and representation gain traction around the country, a young Grand Gedean, Anthony Wulu Gaye, has declared his intention to contest the senatorial seat come in 2023 to fill the gap of robust legislation and leadership which according to him has eluded the county for a very long since the creation of the county in 1964.
Addressing Grand Gedeans both at home and abroad recently in a podcast and press release copy of which was sent to this paper, Mr. Gaye went down memory lane to remind Gedeans the origin of their county, the challenges that have impeded progress over the years which he attributed to the perennial failure of successive leaderships at all levels especially from the perspective of the representation in the national legislature over the years. He said despite the opportunities available in the past to exit the general backwardness the county has been plunged into, the wrong choices during elections have further frustrated all efforts to bring the real change the county deserves.
“In passing words, let me remind you of our origin and the causes for the general backwardness of our dear county. If you sit down and make an objective assessment of ourselves in comparison with our counterparts, Bong, Nimba and Lofa, all 3 counties created along with Grand Gedeh County in 1964 have all leapfrogged us and we are here wondering what went wrong. Well, what went wrong can be attributed to the wrong choices we have been making during elections. It is our hope that 2023 will provide the paradigm shift for real change. We are the custodian of real change”, Gaye said among other things.
The young aspirant who has been described as a perfect example of grass to grace through hard work and God’s command, said the culture of instant gratification from the electorates where the citizens go for what he called “politically induced goodies” such as bags of rice, used clothes, salt, and few local currencies, have not helped the county but rather destroyed their self worth , esteem and initiative to work hard for their own success. He said there is a dire need to change that mindset and make the people imbibe the spirit of self-reliance and worth so as to project a proper future for them and their children.
“You can see that this kind of mindset has not helped our people. Year in , year out in every electoral cycle you find them engaging in this aspect of life where their only demand or concern is to ask for material things that will not take them beyond a week or so. So you see it has created some form of vicious cycle of poverty, disease and ignorance. We are coming to change that mindset and get our people to work. We need to empower them to do more for themselves”, he said.
He bemoaned the infrastructural deficit in the county and said with what is on the ground there is nothing meaningful that can be achieved in terms of development. He said the main hospital in the county, the Martha Tubman Memorial Hospital is in a very bad state, no drugs and other modern facilities to accord the institution the status it should been, the schools are without libraries, laboratories and books while the various towns and villages are not connected to big towns and cities because there are no roads.
He said the way out is to find the funding channels so as to put more money to undertake projects to reverse the trend and identified the unremitted revenue and royalties due the county from companies engaged in illegal logging and mining as some of the realistic sources to get money to fund infrastructural development. He said there was a serious need to take stock of all the companies operating illegally in the county without paying any royalty due the county and take legal action if possible to ensure legitimate money due the county is paid in order to undertake development projects.
The Telecommunications expert while giving more insights of what he intends doing when elected is to place high premium on addressing the rising rate unemployment among the youths, women empowerment, health and sanitation, agricultural productivity and education and skills acquisition.
“I am not going to the Senate as a novice to the plight of our people. I am deeply aware of everything that is keeping the county backward and equally I am have taken steps over the years to identify their solutions some being introducing the right legislation to commit the government to put money in the areas that will trigger down to the county and leveraging on our contacts out there in the Diaspora to find practical means to solving the problems”, he said.
Mr. Gaye also took a swipe at the leadership of the county which include the legislative caucus and the local authority for agreeing to embark upon the reconstruction of the local Headquarters of Liberia National Police which was allegedly destroyed by protesting citizens and other residents in the wake of the police’s inaction and indifference towards the death of a man reported to have been killed by a Fula businessman.
“Asking the citizens to reconstruct a damaged police headquarters which should be the priority of the national government shows that we lack the leadership that should be able to speak for the people. What it means is if the citizens cannot reconstruct that building, there will be no police headquarters in the county and the implication is we cannot have the much-needed maximum security protection, especially with the election coming up next year.
“We call on the leadership of the county to step up their game and tell the national government to reconstruct the edifice as the county has more priority areas to address than to undertake a project that should be the responsibility of the national government”, Gaye said.
Meanwhile, Gaye’s political ambition is attracting massive support in the county, especially among the young people who constitute the majority of the voting block and have resolved this time to elect a young, educated, responsive and people’s centered leader come 2023 so as to accelerate the level of development in the county. Preparations are said to be in top gear for the formal declaration of intention by the fast and trending aspirant in the race.