The Liberian capital Monrovia has been experiencing chaos and violence at the hands of angry students. What started less than a month ago as the presidential vacation job scheme for students turned Monrovia into a scene of violence. Government structures, public schools and vehicles were destroyed by angry students.
President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf had earlier mandated the Monrovia City Corporation to design a scheme to get some 3,000 students employed under the auspices of a vacation job scheme. A program that was intended for 3,000 students turned out to be a chaotic 20,000 or more student vacation job program that soured the relations between the students and the Liberian government .
The riots are said to have erupted after the students who reportedly worked for around a week or so doing sanitation related works in Monrovia turned out for the promised $35 but could not get their pay in time and thereafter ran out of patience.
The violence has left so many with hundreds of unaswered of questions regarding the path of national development. Did the future leaders of Liberia behave like decent people with integrity? Nathan Patio Charles lamented:
Svaye saw the problem from a spiritual perspective:
Samuel Herring weighed on the other side of the coin:
Le Patron Vonk quickly diagnosed the problem and recommended a remedy:
The hungry man is an angry man…Pay the students for the job they did…No curfew will solve this problem…blame it on Mary Broh.
Commenting on Le Patron Vonk's observations, Massa Johnson noted:
ur know we liberians are full off corruption.ur hired ppl with out proper id i myself if i was in lib i will be standing on line with my family.
Clarence Pratt wondered why will the students who will eventually get paid want destroy their country:
Moses Carter pointed out the source of the problem:
I think the problem here is there was error on the part of the recruitment process.. I see it as done in bogus manner.. many youths managed to squeeze their names on the lists through the printing of their own membership forms.. The Government also made mistake by converging over 10,000 youths at one Center to pay them.. something which became very impossible to have been done in time given the bogus recruitment that they had to verify names before payment which took some considerable time… The youths also failed to exercise patients.. the fact that the Government promised to pay them before the season, they needed to have exercise the wait and see action to see what was going to be the outcome of the process.. but instead they ran too fast out of patience… Hope lessons are learnt for future initiatives…
The government of Liberia announced last Friday that it would suspend the payments to all beneficiaries of the Christmas vacation job scheme because unscrupulous individuals infiltrated the process and caused damage to public and private properties. Who was at fault? The debate will certainly continue.