“Homeland or Death”
-abandoned scholars exclaimed
Having been abandoned for about six month without allowance in Cuba and published numerous of futile grievances in Local Newspaper and Front Page Africa to get the Liberian Government attention to see reason to send them support or recall them from Cuba, the Liberian students in Cuba has resolved to come home.
“We think it will be prudent for the government of Liberia to recalled all Liberian students from Cuba until a workable system can be put into place, small shame is better than big shame as it is been said in Liberia. Maybe we can also understand that government do not have enough funds to sustain us here this will also help to release more problems on the government” wrote head of students in Cuba, Mr. Patrick Hover.
According to Mr. Hover, about couple of weeks ago Front Page Africa reported a story about their plights as Liberian students. In that story Liberian ambassador to the US, Nathaniel Barnes, said that he was doing everything possible to remits funds through the Embassy of Cape Verde in Washington. Hover said they met with the Ambassador of Cape Verde in Cuba, who contacted their mission in Cuba, and later informed them that the Liberian ambassador to the US, Amb. Barnes is yet to contact the Cape Verde embassy on their plights.
“Barely, three weeks now since Front Page Africa story was published, we are yet to receive a cent from the Government of Liberia, since our arrival in Cuba on the 16th of October 2008, this has become a struggling issue for the past six months now. Truly, speaking we have resulted to selling our personal items just to enable us survive on a daily basis, which is very frustrating and degrading to us as students from Africa first independent nation, Liberia,” Hover added.
He asked “what is the difference between past governments and the Ellen led government? Deadly deceit; depression and insincerity have characterized our 163 years of independence, thus making Liberia to be among the less fortunate nations in Africa. Today, Liberians are talking about downsizing, rightsizing, bad roads, poor health facilities in the counties and students are crying for per dimes. So, who are we going to turn to for assistance?”
Hover further accentuated that Students from Africa and other parts of the world studying in Cuba are finding it very easy, because their governments have understand the condition of that country, and had put in place a system that makes it easy for a stress free studies.
“Of all the scholarship the government of Liberia has given out, the Cuban scholarship should have been given a first preference, because of the ongoing sanction on this country [Cuba]. To prove our case right, the Liberian Ambassador to America, Amb. Barnes, acknowledged the facts about this country by not been able to use his credit card during his short visit here sometime back,” Hover said.
“We can now understand that this is a strategy to prove the Americo Liberians right that the natives do not like education, their strategy is to place hardship during our six years of studies in Cuba. Sending students on scholarship goes with responsibilities as well, these are some of the factors that should be consider. This should not be seen as a privilege for us but it is part of our share values as Liberians citizen, thus making it our rights. Government of Liberia creates desperation and frustration for us calling it scholarship,” he added.
When asked how the scholarship director was responding to their troubles, he disclosed that Mr. Kaizolu has refused to respond to their mails. He said that they want to come back home because the government is not prepare for them to learn; If this scholarship was for Europe or America some of them wouldn’t have come near it.
In an interview with this reporter on Friday March 27, 2009, the Director of Scholarship, Mr. Kaizolu, said they have tried getting money to Cuba despite the country is close to international services such as money gram and western union. “The allowance the students are calling for is something that the Ministry was working on to get to them,” he said.
He did not say how long it will take to get money to Cuba but since then Hover claimed to have heard nothing from him.
“We seem very much betrayed by the government, because we have been crying for the past six months but it seems no one cares; even the public in general. Maybe they want to hear death among us before any one can know that we are speaking the truth,” he said.
In is conclusion he acknowledged Education is the only way out of darkness to the glorious light. A nation without a soul is a nation without a history. “HASTA A VICTORIA SIEMPRE” [FORWARD EVER TO VICTORY, HOMELAND OR DEATH].