"Liberians Must Not Select Untrained People for Leadership"
–Dr. Somah Urges
Posted June 14, 2004
A Liberian educator and author, Dr. Syrulwa Somah says Liberians need to do away with selecting people who are not trained to be their leaders.
He said instead, Liberians should combine resources to develop a curriculum at their various universities to produce the character of leaders they deserve.
In an article entitled: Who Will Hear My Cry To Train Future Liberian Leaders", Dr. Somah says the nation’s scholars need to develop a curriculum and write textbooks specifically for Liberia and not just about North America and Europe.
The educator said Liberians from the various counties need to start working with their sons and daughters at home and abroad to build their own universities.
"For example, we need the universities in the various counties under the names of those counties to train Liberians across the board without relying solely on the University of Liberia in Monrovia," he said.
Dr. Somah wrote, "in a sense, each county’s university would be able to study and preserve the belief system, customs, values and bodies of knowledge for the people in each county and future generations of Liberia."
The Liberian educator who is currently visiting the country following years of studies in the United States, observed that a lot of Liberians want a college education but the University of Liberia is just too small to accommodate everyone.
He said with the various counties having universities, Liberians could educate their clan and paramount chiefs, soldiers, civil servants, social workers, ethnic specialists and others.
He said these individuals could be people who do not want to become engineers, pilots, medical doctors but in leadership and Liberian studies.
Dr. Somah added, "a degree in leadership or Liberian studies could benefit the political re-mapping of Liberia to the extent of lifting the nation from its present political dungeon and the alienation of the Liberian people."
He said another incentive for such institutions could be a boost in student exchange between the various counties, since people living in these counties know very little about each other. "Notwithstanding, the primary focus of a degree in leadership and Liberian studies must be on culture heritage, national bonding, good governance and public service," Dr. Somah wrote.
Touching on the political aspect of the country, Dr. Somah said, "I believe the beginning point of anything is also the spoiling point. But Liberians have another chance in 2005 to produce its first Nelson Mandela-like leader who will create a new republic in which Liberians could utilize their talents and full potentials as a nation and people."