Weah Erases Bad History Of PHP

By Mark N. Mengonfia

The Atlantic Shore on which free slaves landed many years ago recorded a bad history that Liberians are yet to forget.

On April 23,1980,13 top officials of the government were executed by the then government of Samuel Kanyon Doe’s People Redemption Council (PRC) military regime that overthrew President William R. Tolbert and seized power in a brutal coup d’ etat on April 12, 1980.

They formed the top echelon of the oligarchy that had held largely unchallenged power at the time Liberia was 133 years. Forty-three years have passed since the 13 men were executed on light poles on the shore of the Atlantic ocean in the PHP Community right behind the BTC military Barracks.

In those days, the road leading to the back of the barrack was named, “Redemption Road” because the then government felt that the killing of these top government officials brought redemption to the people of Liberia.

The bad history has lived with Liberians for those many years to the point that the beach was often used by residents for dumping of garbage.

This persisted until the government of George M. Weah saw the need to change the narrative.

December 23, 2023, President Weah led an array of government officials both outgoing and former officials to a colorful dedicatory ceremony of a multipurpose, modern sports park of international standard.

President Weah named the multipurpose, modern sports park, “Unification Park.”

At the inauguration of the park, the Liberian leader requested the joyous Liberians to have a moment of silence for the 13 top officials who were executed on that beach.

He said, “Join me for a moment of silence for those that perished here on this beach. May their souls and all others depart rest in peace.

President Weah told the gathering that when he traveled and saw beautiful infrastructure in the African region, the best he could do was to replicate the same back home. He said the construction of the Unification Park was jointly done by the Government of Liberia and the Government of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), through a grant.

According to him, the park intends to erase the bad history of the PHP Community which has been remembered for the death of the 13 former officials of the Tolbert administration who were executed in the immediate aftermath of the April 1980 military coup. The newly constructed park captured a monument which carries the inscription, “Unification Park.”

The dedicatory ceremony was graced by former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. In her remarks, Madam Sirleaf thanked President Weah for gifting Liberians with such a park. She said, “ People from every part of this country will come here and play their games, be able to sit here and talk and the monument they have is a monument of unity, you know what it means” she asked a rhetorical question.

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