Over Land Survey Initiative: Tehr District Citizens Back Ellen

Over Land Survey Initiative: Tehr District Citizens Back Ellen

A meticulous investigation conducted by the Independent Authoritative Heritage has found out that former President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf’s intention in sponsoring a survey in four major towns in Tehr District, Bomi County was aimed at giving the people of the district legitimacy to their land and nothing else.

According to our investigation, which is backed by accounts from several Citizens of Tehr District as well as multiple independent sources, former President Johnson-Sirleaf’s move was also her own way of reaching out to the people of the district as not in the capacity as a former President, but as their “oldma” from the same area.

The four major towns include: Julijuah, Daedallah, Zordee and Fomba Towns.

Our investigation runs contrary to reports in some segment of the Liberian media that, among other things, alleged that the former Liberian leader was trying to impose Sime Darby, an oil palm company on the people, while at the same time trying to forcibly and illegally grab some of their land.
The four major towns include: Julijuah, Daedallah, Zordee and Fomba Towns.

During a Heritage’s visit t to the four towns recently, several citizens, including town chiefs, elders, youth leaders as well as local residents categorically dismissed the media reports and distanced themselves from said media reports.

The citizens told this paper that the action of the former president was to give the local people titled deeds to their land, which is intended to legitimize their ownership in a bid to avoid future embarrassment.

They explained that the action by the former President to sanction the survey was in response to an appeal to her by the locals because of an developing land conflict among the four major towns.

In a chat with this paper, the Town Chief of Fomba, Chief Lusine Lunnah, described the ongoing survey as a great help to the ordinary people who do not have the financial might to carry out such survey.

“The oldma is doing well for us, because we couldn’t even afford the cost of this survey that is currently taking place. As I am speaking to you, the process has been going on very smoothly and no one has ever frowned at it. All the people from the four towns are very happy with this process- we are going to hold titled deeds to our lands. To us, this is welcoming, and so I am surprised where this information is coming from,” said Chief Lunnah.

“This process started long ago and as we speak, it has been completed between the other three towns; Julijuah, Zordee and Daedallah. The last portion just started yesterday between us and Daedallah. Absolutely, the oldma mean no harm to us. She has not even discussed about any company business with us or even asked us for a piece of land,” he asserted.

“All I can say is that if Sime Darby or any company will come here, it will be in the future, but as of now, nothing. Let me make this clear, it was we, in fact, that went to her to ask her for this favor, so no one should play politics into this,” the town chief furthered.
Elder Momo Dunnor, also of Fomba Town, asserted that the ex-President’s gesture is in the best interest of the local citizens.

Elder Dunnor mentioned that that the initiative was intended to solve the continuous conflict of land ownership among people of the four towns.

“To be fair, if the former President were someone bad or evil, some of us wouldn’t have been sitting where we are today. Others had told her that all of these places fall under her home town, Julijuah, but she said that was not possible, because she is a woman of peace,” the elder noted.

“All of these rumors that are going around, we, here, have not heard it. Maybe it is the work of some politicians who are not happy with the good the oldma is doing for her people her. She has not one day come here to say let me survey your land then you give me piece, neither had she sent anyone on her behalf,” he indicated.

Asked whether he would embrace the decision of a company in the town, he responded: “One man cannot make decision here. We will discuss as a town and see what is best for the people and not one man coming up to decide for the people. But all I can say is that the former President is always there for us and anything she does is for our good.”

Seh Beyen, Sub Town Chief of Daedallah, intoned that Madam Johnson-Sirleaf’s quest in sponsoring the survey is to maintain and promote peace and harmony among the people of the adjacent towns and villages to her.

“We never had the money to do this and so she decided to do it for us. And I think the former President’s intention is to avoid further embarrassment that the people are faced with about this land business. Let me join others to inform you that she is doing this by her willingness and support to her people, but she has not asked for any favor in return. Doing this was very expensive, especially taking into consideration the sizes of our lands, we are very poor to do it,” he stated.

Several youthful citizens, including Marcus Beyan, Mark Beyan and Dorothy Beyan, all of Daedallah, expressed joy over the survey process, stressing that it will benefit the young people most, who are future leaders of the towns.

The youth of Daedallah urged Liberians, especially politicians who are spreading such rumor to desist, noting that this is not in the best interest of the country.

“They should get the fact before speaking out or spreading news. I think this is being said out of envy and jealousy for the oldma and the people of our towns. They want everything for themselves and onto themselves; they wished it were their towns that were benefiting,” Mark stated.

“I am feeling good and fine in my mind that the former President is doing this for us. For those who are in the habit of spreading false news, I think the reason they are doing this is because they don’t want our lands to be surveyed so that they will have the chance to always encroach on it. The only interest of the former President is that we are one people and she wants us to live happily, she wants us to continue living in peace and harmony,” Dorothy asserted.

Varnnah Gbelleh, an elder of the town also thanked the President for her kind gesture, which he said will go a long way in the history of the towns and its people, especially for the young people.

Also in an interview with the former President, she described the information as false and misleading propaganda that are intended to keep the country down.

The former Liberian leader, who has a 210 acre of farmland in Julijuah, said she was happy with what she has.

Madam Johnson-Sirleaf indicated that she has no reason(s) to encroach or take others’ land.

She also denied rumor of imposing the Sime Darby Plantation on the local people as claimed by some local media and circulated in the public sphere.

“I am happy with my area. I am happy being here, and especially I am happy living with my people here. We are all living together here happily. In fact, when I am clearing my area they all come and volunteer because they love me,” the former President indicated.

“People make all of these kinds of false rumors; propaganda, and these are the kinds of things that keep this country backward. If they heard something, they were to just come here; just come at the junction and take a bike to drive in here and within no time you are here to talk to the people, instead of spreading falsehood,” the former President responded.

Read 156 times Last modified on Wednesday, 31 July 2019 08:31
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