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One of the current debates in Liberia is the issue that has to do with Proposition 24, a proposal from the Constitution Review Committee to the legislature to make Liberia a Christian state.

If the legislature approves it, the Proposition would be put up for referendum for public voting. Proponents of proposition argued that Liberia was originally a Christian country, but it has abandoned this religious belief in favour of a secular state; that Liberia’s present condition or problems are primarily results of this abandonment and once the country returns to a Christian state, its problems would be solved.

Naomi Momolu, 14 and a 9th grade student of T-Five Academy
Naomi argued that she is in total disagreement with the Proposition. According to her, she is in total disagreement with the proposal for the following reasons.
“One: Liberia was never and is not a Christian country, two, the underlining principle or notion of the proposition is faulty or erroneous and three, proposition 24 is divisive.”

“What do I mean? Liberia as a country came into being through the American Colonization Society which sponsored, transported and settled American black ex-slaves to Africa in the early 1800s.”

“Although the settlers originally named Monrovia “Christopolis”, the city of Christ and though the Declaration of Independence was made in a church in 1847, I stand to be corrected that Liberia was never a Christian nation,” she argued.

She cited that the belief that current problems of Liberia are due mostly to the secular state of the country is faulty. “Liberian problems started before the formation of the nation. The country was conceived with the notion that African people were inferior and that the minority settlers must rule and control them.”
“Today, Liberia is among the top five corrupt and poorest countries in the world. Making Liberia a Christian nation would therefore not change that and such would not improve the situation. Our problem would be solved primarily by having good leadership, more over it divides us further, promote religious intolerance and weaken our so called fragile unity as one people.”

Remember Zazaviley, 24 and a graduate of the Royal Institute

In counter argument, she opposed the view of her colleague saying, “I do agree with the proposition to Christianize Liberia as a Christian nation. Liberia was founded on a Christian principal according to history and there’s no way this country can be a circular state.”

She added that it very frustrating for people including even those who considered themselves as Christians to support Muslims in their wicked quest calling for the nation to be a circular state.

“The peace that we now enjoyed is a direct intervention of God Almighty which is a result of continued fasting and praying by our religious leaders including bishops, pastors, pray mothers and Christians themselves,” she said arguably.

Mai Sawo, 18 and a 10th grade student of Effort Baptist

For her, she said such is not a good path to tread because it comes with dissatisfaction and that threatens religious tolerance. “The path to create one dominate religion is not a good path for our post-conflict country because it threatens religious tolerance.”

“It is dangerous to do such and it will have no winners. We as one people must never seek to create a frightening monster that will devour us or imperil our existence and our freedoms. It is said that the path of religious intolerance is not necessary now for a post-conflict country, especially following years of conflict. But again, if citizens want it that way, who am I to deny that? It is their right and no one can take that from them,” she said.

Massa Kollie, 22 and a 12th grade student of William Booth High School
She puts her point across that the proposition is meant to bring about disunity in the country that is already finding it increasing difficult to reconcile the people from the social impact of the civil war that destroyed lives and properties in the country.

“Proposition 24 would further bring disunity to the country. It would separate us from our Muslim brothers and sisters and could bring about discrimination. As a secular nation, we have to live together as one and we should stay that way,” she said.

“I am a baptized Pentecostal Christian; I have been a Christian all my entire life, but I do not think it would be fair and right for my Christian faith and longstanding religious background to be imposed on the nation and make another group of different religion second class citizens.”

“If you are a Muslim, would you like such possible separation and marginalization, certainly you wouldn’t.”

And, if this proponent succeeds with proposition 24, what’s next? They could propose later that minority religious groups should leave the country. This sometimes can happen when a nation blames its domestic problems on defenceless minority, which it considers foreign; therefore, I also disagreed with those calling for the Christianizing of Liberia.

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