Citizens of this part of Liberia has from time to time experience bad road condition, which often compels them to transact in Sierra Leonean or Guinean currencies. Vehicular movement to Vahun has been intermittent; not until the administration of former President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf carried out full rehabilitation of the road corridor between 2011/2013.
Following that intervention, a spot on Karboi Hill got damaged in 2016, which witnessed pockets of intervention from their lawmaker, Julie Fatorma Wiah and other prominent citizens. Today, those interventions have become a waste, as the road has finally been cut off, causing vehicular movement to come to a complete halt in the area. This happened since two months ago, and has remained unattended to up to present.
Citizens from there residing in Monrovia now have to travel by way of Sierra Leone in order to access their wonderful Vahun City. Even though the city of Vahun remains a challenge with bad road condition, it has some of the brightest students, most of whom, are underprivileged and rely on scholarship for achievement.
However, some of the very students are problem for their own people who are already underrepresented at national level. Some students from there usually rally around politicians who have no capacity to deliver them and their district from marginalization.
This and many other conditions have caused the district to suffer serious setback, while others are progressing due to the kind of leadership they elect.
Amidst the road condition, the natural resource potential of Vahun cannot be overemphasized. Notwithstanding, its citizens are among some of the poorest people in Liberia, as some of their sons and daughters continue to sing praises onto political leaders who are making less impact on their district.
The road has been cut off completely, thereby exacerbating the hardship of the people in addition to the lack of access to medical supplies and other necessities.
One would expect that all the sons and daughters would galvanize efforts to put pressure on their leaders to take action to remedy the situation, but it is obvious that some will soon put up defensive posture in favor of their respective political leaders who come under criticism for their inaction towards repairing the road.
Vahun, a rich but poor city is represented by Julie Fatorma Wiah in the National Legislature. Since her election, her critics say she has done less to impact the lives of the people of Vahun whether through personal initiatives or lobbying. She has been heavily criticized for underrepresenting their district, using divisive politics to stay in power. She is also accused of being a “Bobo” lawmaker who makes less or no case for her people in the legislature, as is the case of the current road condition that has impeded vehicular movement.
Some critics of Representative Julie say one of the reasons she has not shown interest in making the rehabilitation of the damaged road as part of her immediate legislative agenda is simply because most of the staff in her office are not from the district she is representing. Hence, they have less or no interest in the wellbeing of the district. “It is not possible that these people will concern themselves with that road problem because majority of them are not citizens of the district,” an aggrieved citizen intoned in a friendly conversation with me.
It is not clear why Julie hired non-citizens to serve her district office, but critics say such decision shows total disrespect to the young graduates of the district ,most of whom, vehemently campaigned for her reelection. Well, as critics of Julie critiques her for underperforming, political observers say, the “half backed” Sierra Leonean turned renowned Liberian politician is strategically positioned between supporters who are from Liberia and Sierra Leone.
They believe that such politics has worked well for her because most of her supporters have used their connections in Sierra Leone to pull voters for her. Some of those supporters, who reside and school in Liberia, according to observers, have less or no interest in the wellbeing of citizens in the district because their entire generation live across the border.
“These people have nothing to lose because their entire family live across the border in Sierra Lone. They only get behind people like Julie to get what they want even though they live and school in Liberia,” asserted one Dukuly, a son of District# 2.
“Ironically, Julie’s Chief of Office Staff(COS), also a former District Coordinator, Mr. Gabriel Sackie is from Sinoe County, Southeastern Liberia. So what do you expect such a person to do for a district he is not from originally,” another curious citizen accentuated.
“Some of Representative Julie’s staff not also from the district include: Alfred Kollie, Foyah District, Momo Dunnor Masabolahun, Kolahun District and Brender Kamara,” added the curious citizen, who spoke on condition of anonymity.