Last week, Ellen Johnson the first female President in Africa was shunned by demonstrators and rape activists as she attempted to speak to the gathering. According to reports, Sirleaf is too close to the George Weah administration that has done nothing to solve the escalating rape crisis and gender based violence and sexual assaults against Liberian women. Compounding this, sources suggest the former president failed women and girls when she was in power, on so many fronts. Under her administration, for example, Liberia was the rape capital in Africa in which mass rapes, the break down in the rule of law, massive corruption, nepotism, a weak judiciary and her interference in the legislative governance of the country are still remembered and has all but drowned her domestic support even as she has gone on to win the prestigious Mo Ibrahim award, and the coveted Nobel Peace Prize, amongst others international conferrals. And therefore when she showed up at the rape protest in the country she once led, the crowd heckled her, and she left with her head bowed, she was shamed, damned, and disrespected and it was a pity and a spectacle to watch, respected abroad, at home she’s vilified!
“Violence against females is the most widely reported violent crime in the West African country of Liberia, affecting hundreds of thousands of women and girls, says a new report from the Small Arms Survey,” according to a PRI, 2012 report, written by Alex Pearlman, stating that “According to Liberian peace and women’s rights activist Leymah Gbowee, there is little education, or justice, in the areas of sexual violence and sexual health in Liberia. Although she says the country has “done well” since the civil war ended in 2003, “there’s still a long way to go” in the country with the worst teen pregnancy rates in West Africa – 3 out of 10 teenage girls get pregnant, she told students at Northeastern University this week.”
Pearlman was quick to add, that “Many believe the violence ended with the peaceful election of the current president, Africa’s first democratically elected female head of state, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the truth is that violence against women and girls (shortened to VAWG for the purposes of the brief report) continues in the country.”
For example, In 2017, alone, there were about 900 reported rapes with zero prosecution for a population of about 4mil., that’s astronomical! But the bad news is that under the Nobel Laureate’s administration, the biggest rape scandal in Africa, if not the world occurred on her watch with UN peace keeping troops vast sexual abuses made international headlines, and then another catastrophic incident in which an American NGO” MORE THAN ME”, misused its privileges to abuse Liberian girls, using them as sex slaves, trafficking and tragically infected hundreds if not thousands with HIV Aids. It is stupendous to think all these tragic events took place under a woman’s President, said a commentator, but the sad fact is that these are true. Johnson’s successor, Weah, sadly, has done little or nothing to fix this national genocide. Ellen Sirleaf concerned about her “protection,” left the justice and judicial systems and institutions very weak which still lie in ruins ___compounding an already desperate situation for African women and the population in the country—which has now gotten out of hand.
Main Photo: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, /Aljeezera