Liberia’s Perennial Problems
Three major recurrent problems may have metastasized but remain unresolved since Liberia declared its independence over a hundred and seventy years ago. The excessive greed for power and money, inability to overcome the country’s export and import problem, taxing the indigenous more and more, but never giving back to improve their human condition, even in prosperous times, and the extrinsically ridden policies most of which have never achieved practical results or maximize the return on capital.
The founding fathers, from Joseph Jenkins Roberts to Barclay, including the present leaders, have struggled to balance the country’s imports and exports, to borrow money to fulfill the country’s divergent development goals and reduce the widening gap between the few that work for the government and the rest of the citizenry, the 95%. The worst perennial problem is the mountain of debts that continue to handicap investment in vital sectors, including agriculture, self-sufficiency, at least, in rice production, quality education, healthcare, and technology.
A few years ago, the World Bank and the IMF canceled Liberia’s $4.6 Billion debt. The country is again sinking into debt. Without the ability and capability and smart investment in boosting our export capabilities and hiring people who have both the capacity and capability to produce more than consume, the vicious cycle of indebtedness and imports and exports imbalance will sadly continue unabated.