The Government of Liberia through the Ministry of State for Presidential Affairs is informing the entire public and all marketers that it has begun the relocation of marketers of the old Ma Juah Market in Vai Town.The market is being relocated in the old Liberia Tractor Company (LIBTRACO) building opposite the Georgia Pattern United Methodist Church on Water Street, UN Drive.According to an Executive Mansion statement, the new site has been refurbished to include everything expected of all modern markets that were previously lacking at the old Ma Juah Market in Vai Town. The new location will be dedicated later this week.The previously occupied premises will undergo a massive demolition exercise beginning tomorrow, the statement said.Meanwhile, all marketers who have not relocated to the new facilities at the old LIBTRACO building are asked to do so with immediate effect to avoid any hindrance to the exercise.Upon hearing of this development yesterday, our Business and Economy Desk conducted an interview with some marketers at the Ma Juah Market and this is what they told the Daily Observer:“We are disappointed over the process as well as the environment designated for the relocation. Already we are about 600 to 700 marketers occupying the vicinity given them temporarily in the Vai Town area, but the old LIBTRACO Building being processed for them can house only between 200- 250 marketers.” The marketers also complained of a “poor drainage system” in the new marketplace.Besides the drains being small, the marketers said that during heavy downpour of rain, people have to wear boots to enter the new premises. It is also no secret that during prolonged rainfall, the river overflows and runs through pipes that are connected to the building, thereby causing serious flooding and chaos.Mr. Bai S. Won-kulah, supervisor of the Ma Juah Market, who spoke to our Business Desk, said they are not against the development, even though a relocation process carries its own pains, losses and benefits. But if the process must be welcomed by the beneficiaries, somewhere better should be set aside, not that place –the old LIBTRACO Building—because the relocation has its own negative impact on business people.According to him, the gathering of marketers in the Vai Town vicinity is a long story which began initially on an Easter Sunday in 2006, when their market tables were broken down by the police under the directive of Madam Munah Sieh-Brown, then Police Director.The market supervisor said the current space used at Ma-Juah Market now was a space used by truckers and also a parking lot for vehicles transporting people to Maryland and Sinoe Counties. Upon negotiations made by President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, They were told that the venue would be used as a temporary market site.Being aware of the decision to allow them to use that space temporarily, said Mr. Won-kulah, it was difficult for the market administrators to carry out any major improvements.Since 2006, he added, it was on August 19, 2014 that he received a call to appear at the Executive Mansion for a meeting with the President and that meeting was attended by the Minister of Gender and Development and the Liberia Marketing Association president. In that meeting, the President informed him that it was about time that the marketers leave the Vai Town location since there was an outbreak of the Ebola virus in the country with Monrovia being the epicenter.“I appealed to her to let the Ebola outbreak subside before finalizing her decision, taking into consideration that the majority of the marketers have taken loans from Access Bank and every loan has a timeframe attached for its repayment. I pleaded with her not to make the pronouncement soon so that it did not cause us more frustration,” he said.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Two weeks ago I arrived at the San Francisco airport. The young, attractive, personable black woman at the rental car desk wore a badge that said “Trainee.” I smiled and said, “That’s an odd name.” She laughed. I asked whether she was from San Francisco. She replied, “No, I’m not from here. I’m from Atlanta.” “Why are you here?” I asked. “I moved back with my parents here in town.” AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.“I thought you said you were not from here.” “Well,” she said, “I’m from here, but I went to school in Atlanta, and I prefer it there. So I consider it my home.” “What were you doing in Atlanta?” I asked. “I attended Clark University, but after a couple of years I got pregnant, so I came home.” “Are you in school now?” “No, because the money’s too good.” “Too good to remain in school?” “For now,” she answered. “What is it you don’t like about San Francisco?” “It’s just so racist,” she said. “Racist? Isn’t this one of the most liberal cities in the country?” I asked. She rolled her eyes. “Sign here,” she said. “You know, I should have finished my training program some time ago, but because I’m black, they’re making me stay longer.” “How do you know it’s because you’re black?” Another roll of the eyes. As I was leaving, I said, “You know, given your people skills and your drive, whatever obstacles others place in your way, you’ll be able to overcome them.” “Wait, what do you mean?” I turned around. “I mean that given your charm and your apparent drive, I’m sure you’ll be able to deal with – and maybe even turn around – anybody who gets in your way.” “You think so?” she asked. “I know so.” Which brings us to Stanley O’Neal, the recently ousted black CEO of Merrill Lynch. Who is Stanley O’Neal? Born in segregated Alabama in 1951, O’Neal spent his early childhood delivering newspapers, picking corn and cotton on the family farm, and being educated in a one-room school built by his grandfather. He landed a job on General Motors’ assembly line, and won a place studying engineering and industrial administration at the General Motors Institute. O’Neal later secured a Harvard scholarship, where he earned an MBA. He left General Motors for Merrill Lynch in 1986, beginning a meteoric rise to CFO in 1998, president in 2000 and CEO in 2002. In July 2002, when Fortune magazine named O’Neal the most powerful black executive in the country, O’Neal refused to comment for the story. Most interviewers found O’Neal disinclined to talk about his race and background, as Fortune later wrote: “(O’Neal) is even reluctant to discuss what it’s like to be the first African American to run a major Wall Street firm.” Last year business pundits praised O’Neal, and his firm rewarded him for their record $7.5billion net income by paying O’Neal $48million, one of Wall Street’s richest packages. Back in 2002, when O’Neal was picked for ascension to CEO, Fortune published a fairly glowing, lengthy story on O’Neal titled, “Can Stan O’Neal Save Merrill?” mentioning his race only once. Aside from noting that O’Neal was the first black CEO of a big investment firm, most stories at the time focused on O’Neal’s accomplishments, his leadership style and the obstacles facing Merrill Lynch – but did not focus on his race. But O’Neal, as did many CEOs in financial services, placed bad bets in the mortgage market. The subprime meltdown resulted in a $7.9billion write-off in mortgage-related assets for Merrill Lynch’s third quarter. His rivals – Citigroup Inc. and others – also lost huge sums of money. After his five-year tenure – average for an American CEO – the board fired him. As for the termination, only a handful of papers bothered to mention that O’Neal is black – and usually deep into the story. O’Neal’s race played no role in either his hiring or firing. So Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton will likely remain silent – for a change. As to the trainee at the rental car agency, I doubt whether she ever heard of O’Neal. But she certainly could benefit from something the former Merrill Lynch CEO once told Newsweek: “It’s maybe the only country in the world that could have somebody like me start out where I did and wind up doing what I’m doing.” Larry Elder is a syndicated radio talk-show host and author. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!