Opposition politician Alexander Cummings of the Alternative National Congress (ANC) has offered to work with the government of Liberia in whatever way he reasonably can to help as the country is hit by another round of the Covid-19 Pandemic.
The ANC Political Leader through his Cummings Africa Foundation (CAF) has already made a donation of two 40-foot containers worth US$565,000.00 (L$62.7 million) of medical supplies and equipment to six hospitals in six counties in Liberia.
“The Cummings Africa Foundation is open to working with authorities of the Ministry of Health to identify some of the urgent gaps in the national response that we can make some quick interventions to.” Cummings stated.
He is appealing to Liberians across the Diaspora to reach out with whatever assistance and support they can mobilize and provide to the government, medical facilities, family members and loved ones in Liberia. Cummings said Liberians need each other to help see them through this dark period.
The ANC Political Leader also sent out an SOS call to the international community, especially the United States, European Union, and all friendly nations of the world, for much-needed help with vaccines, medical supplies, ventilators, and other support to local hospitals and community clinics.
At home and abroad, as Liberians do all they can to keep ourselves safe and care for those who are sick, Cummings is asking the world to also help us. If nothing is done urgently, he believes the numbers will quadruple, as more people will get infected and several more will die.
To all Liberians and those within the country’s borders, Cummings is urging them to act to keep themselves safe.
“Wear a mask to cover your nose and mouth. Wash your hands with soap and water as often as possible. Keep a safe distance from others. Avoid crowded places, avoid hugging, and avoid shaking hands,” Cummings pleads.
He declared, however, that the continued failures of the government do not have to lead to any more avoidable deaths as each Liberian needs to act to save lives.
“Our lives depend on each of us. Please, do whatever you can to save the life of a friend, neighbor, family, someone you love, or may not even know.”
To health workers who are risking their lives on the frontlines, Cummings said: “I send you my love, admiration, and respect.”
He vowed to pressure the George Weah-led government to do the right thing, to give to health workers the deserved materials and financial support required to help them do their work better at this difficult time.
“Like every Liberian, my heart is broken. I am deeply saddened and I feel your pains. The harsh truth is that this too, could have been avoided.
“It hurts, particularly, knowing that amidst the already poor leadership of the Weah Administration which has brought untold sufferings, our people now must also deal with a health crisis that could have been avoided. Even now as our people troupe to get vaccinated, they are being turned away as the vaccines are being rationed, only due to the fact that of the 123,000 vaccines donated to us, 27,000 donated by the AU expired in 2 weeks upon delivery due to the very low demand. That is about 20% of much needed vaccines, which could have been used in less than a week, expired instead of ensuring every single dose was utilized and not one thrown away. Even those being tested now, have to wait up to 5-7 days to get their results. This is unacceptable,” Cummings mentioned.
According to him, in the first place, this outbreak should not have reached this far as he just cannot understand why early actions were not taken to impose appropriate restrictions on travelers coming into the country from COVID hotspots around the world. He said this is a complete leadership failure beyond words.
In the midst of this chaos and existential threat to the people, he frowned on President Weah for, without any conscience and sense of responsibility to the people, leaving on his usual private jet to Ghana.
He believes at this point, the President should cancel all further travels and remain in country to lead this effort until this situation is handled.
“There is no time for politics here. I call on President Weah to LEAD. That is why the people of this country gave him their votes in 2017. They entered a social contract with him to protect them and change their lives.”
He said President Weah cannot continue to abandon that responsibility by continuing to lead from the back as has been the case since his ascendancy.
At this difficult time, Cummings is demanding compassionate and prudent leadership, which is clearly lacking.
“I know that instead of them working overtime to address the urgent threat on our people, I can assure you, they will do what they know best – find excuses for their failure as usual. They will childishly argue that even some powerful countries around the world were overwhelmed by the virus, and how about a poor country like Liberia? But I tell them, that there are many more countries in the world that prioritized their people by taking scientific and social measures to arrest the virus in its tracks, thus sparing their people the tragedy we face today.”
Cummings said there are a number of recent public measures that have been announced by the government. “Speaking to doctors and other health experts, I do not believe that they are enough to address the seriousness of the difficulty we currently face. We need to act more fully to mobilize the nation to take the actions that are required to end the spread.”
Cummings: “Fellow Liberians, rest assured, I am coming home immediately from the US where I have been having high level meetings to be with you in this crisis. I promise, I will not allow you to take this difficult road alone. I have already put together a team of advisors who are now working out modalities for our modest but genuine intervention.”
He added: “My wife Teresa and I again extend our prayers to those suffering from the virus and our comfort and deepest sympathies to all who are grieving and mourning. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you. We pray for God’s divine comfort and healing on all the afflicted. And we pray for our country – that this darkness will end so that we are awakened not just to a new day but to a rebirth of our country.”