What does Jucontee Woewiyu, Edwin Snowe, Chris Neyor and others have in common?
At one time in their adult and professional lives, these individuals worked directly or closely with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, and saw admirable qualities in her when they sacrificed it all to work in her government.
What the individuals also have in common is that they wrote open letters to Madame Sirleaf after they left their lucrative government jobs, and after their relationships with her went south.
Except for the unsavory Edwin Snowe who still works as a member of the House of Representatives, Jucontee T. Woewiyu, the other unsavory character who crisscrossed between Sirleaf and Taylor and now found himself in a US prison for war crimes, Chris Neyor was the wunderkind who sealed his lips, left the people’s thing alone, earned or stole his millions until he too came tumbling down the hard way.
As energy advisor, confidant, war advisor, Speaker of the House or ordinary member of the House of Representatives, the individuals provided services to a president whom they loved, cherished, were willing to die for, or were even willing to throw their mothers off the top of a house to protect.
That’s how stupid and fanatical the individuals were at one time about their “old ma” when they stood firmly at the top of political power and acted as if the words “poverty, greed, corruption” and “nepotism” were alien words activist Liberians manufactured to embarrass their “old ma” Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
Christopher Neyor’s tell-all letter to Madame Sirleaf details corruption in NOCAL, the (national oil company); back door financial dealings, and presidential son Robert Sirleaf’s ruthless and often overbearing relationship with Neyor, which caused tension and Neyor’s eventual departure from government.
See, writing tell-all is a familiar way to speak embarrassingly about a boss when a person leaves government or their former employer. The difference between Liberians and others is that Liberians write open letters to their president; and those in the West write books to make money, and to also tell the world everything bad and negative about their former boss.
The problem I have with this cowardly strategy is that it is an insincere approach to activism.
Because when these individuals were at the top of their professions and enjoyed the privilege that came with it, their only concerns were to protect their jobs, their lifestyles and paychecks, and were not interested in supporting a good cause that helps their people and country.
And when others sacrificed it all – their lives, families and income-earning potentials by speaking and writing about deplorable working conditions – in the case of Liberia; poverty, corruption, nepotism, the lack of jobs and better living conditions for all Liberians, these same deceptive individuals are known to stifle dissent by protecting their “old ma” and their jobs, and by saying everything negative about the political activists.
From one Liberian to another, however, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s name has surfaced over and over again as an arrogant, insensitive, evil and manipulative, image-conscious lady whose reasons for being president are not about showing leadership and creating jobs and improving the economic conditions of the Liberian people.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s visionless presidency has always been about Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and her children, grandchildren and the rest of her extended family.
In Ellen’s world, plundering the nation’s natural resources and manipulating the civil service process are ways this matriarch is able to prepare a better place for her children and extended family before and after she’s gone.
After her children and family members share is secured, the leftover crumbs are then thrown to cronies such as the disgraced and disgruntled Neyor, who is now shamelessly spilling the dirt on Madame Sirleaf, as if he’s breaking new grounds when he dishes everything mean and destructive about Ellen, her son Robert, and her government.
To their credit, however, Liberian political activists – especially those in the Diaspora has been writing and speaking and exposing poverty, corruption, nepotism, the lack of leadership and jobs, hardship and insanity in the Sirleaf administration.
When these patriotic Liberians take on Ellen John Sirleaf and the Sirleaf administration publicly, they are called bad names and discredited for writing and speaking out about how terrible the so-called “old ma” has governed their country.
“The primary purpose of a government is to protect and empower its citizens but as President of our country, all I have experienced at close range with you is a selfish desire to protect and empower only your family where your son Robert Sirleaf and your sister Jan Barnard are given power our constitution does not assign to instigate appointments, dismissals and amass ill-gotten wealth,” Neyor writes.
Neyor is too late in the activist game to now come forward and pretend as if he cares about the Liberian people. Where has he been all these years? Why now?
The man, Neyor, comes out as an angry man; a frustrated man who was crisscrossed and disrespected and denied his share of the oil deal by Robert Sirleaf and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
Remember years ago, the slimy Edwin Snowe also wrote his own tell-all “Open Letter” in which he exposed and detailed how Robert Sirleaf and his mom took him out of a surreptitious oil deal he helped to negotiate with a foreign government/agent.
At the end of the day, Snowe, who was supposed to be so angry that he wrote an “open letter” exposing Ellen and Robert, reportedly apologized and made amends with the mother and son team.
“Robert resignation is also a joke because it is an open secret that he still calls the shot at NOCAL. Well, actually, he does at every agency where money and natural resources are involved including trying to give away Wologisi after the Western Cluster fiasco,” Neyor added.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s corrupt and nepotistic leadership style is perhaps going her way right now.
Perhaps because her paid international image-makers and paid public relations experts are working hard for Harvard University and other institutions and organizations to continue to recognize her and give her awards, which is a mockery.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s leadership style is certainly creating tension in Liberia and could prove fatal, if she continues to tread her current paths of arrogance and insensitivity.
Hopefully, Ms. Sirleaf remembers history – 1980 and latter years when both Presidents William R. Tolbert Jr. and Samuel Kanyon Doe were overthrown and killed before our naked eyes for corruption, nepotism, etc.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf could be next!