What Liberian President George Weah must do

Robtel Neajai Pailey & Silas Kpanan’Ayoung Siakor urge President George Weah to take action on key issues before the president loses favour with those who elected him.

Now that footballer-turned-politician George Weah has been inaugurated as Liberia’s 25th president, he will face the challenging task of reviving a resilient, yet deeply divided, poorly managed, post-war country.

Weah was the frontrunner among 20 candidates who ran […]

Book Review: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf by Pamela Scully

 In scarcely 100 short pages, this excellent addition to the Ohio Short Histories of Africa series offers a valuable perspective on Liberia’s outgoing President, and Africa’s first elected female Head of State.  With its small size yet wide scope, it sometimes reads less as a biography of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, and more as a potted history of the Republic […]

Liberia needs the rule of law, not political expediency

Robtel Neajai Pailey & Edward Emmett Dillon examine the US government’s  uncanny ability to promote democracy while simultaneously undermining it.

In strongly worded statements this month that bordered on hyperbole, current and past representatives of the US government urged Liberia to speed up electoral litigation proceedings for a peaceful transition of presidential power.

In response to the Liberian Supreme Court’s suspension of a runoff election that should […]

  • Permalink Liberia President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf speaks at an Addis Ababa meeting in May 2013 Photo Credit: Africa Progress Panel via Flickr  CC BY 2.0Gallery

    Is Liberia’s Sirleaf really standing up for women? #LiberiaDecides

Is Liberia’s Sirleaf really standing up for women? #LiberiaDecides

Robtel Neajai Pailey and Korto Reeves Williams say that President Sirleaf’s promise to campaign for women candidates in Liberia’s upcoming elections comes too little, too late.
In a public statement earlier in August 2017, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf – Africa’s first woman elected head of state – vowed to campaign actively for female candidates running in presidential and legislative elections in […]

Legal invisibility was the best thing to happen to me

I became an undocumented migrant at age six and it changed my life writes Robtel Neajai Pailey.


For the millions of undocumented migrants across the globe, life unfolds above ground, but below the radar.

I should know.

When I was six years old, I plunged into a vortex of legal invisibility and remained trapped in its grip for nearly 15 years.

Born in Monrovia, […]

  • Permalink Photo Credit: Kerry Lannert via Flickr ( CC BY-NC-ND 2.0Gallery

    Book Review: Ebola: How a People’s Science Helped End an Epidemic by Paul Richards

Book Review: Ebola: How a People’s Science Helped End an Epidemic by Paul Richards

Ebola: How a People’s Science Helped End an Epidemic is one of the first books to provide an in-depth analysis of the recent pandemic in West Africa, The author Paul Richards has done an excellent job in bringing to the fore community efforts in responding to the virus, says Jamie Hitchen.


On a recent visit to Freetown, a Sierra Leonean […]

September 16th, 2016|Book Reviews, Featured, Health|2 Comments|

The UN Had to Go, but Is Liberia Really Prepared for Peace?

Liberia’s peace will continue to be fragile if it focuses exclusively on security while neglecting the rule of law, poverty, unemployment, health and the youth bulge, say  Robtel Neajai Pailey and Thomas Jaye.


Liberia has had more than a decade to plan for the day when international peacekeepers in blue helmets and their civilian counterparts would eventually pack up and […]

A Child’s Eye View of Corruption

Daniel Agbiboa reviews Gbagba, a new children’s storybook written by Liberian academic and activist Robtel Neajai Pailey.

Corruption has become the real stuff of public discourse and everyday practice in many African societies, implicating both citizens and subjects, both public and private life. During the course of a recent fieldwork in my native Nigeria, I was repeatedly struck by the […]

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    VIDEO: There is nothing uniquely African about corruption by Robtel Neajai Pailey

VIDEO: There is nothing uniquely African about corruption by Robtel Neajai Pailey

Liberian academic, activist and author Robtel Neajai Pailey discusses her ‘bloodless revolution’ to fight Gbagba (corruption) in Liberia. She states that corruption is not just about private or public sector graft but also the dubious ways in which we all cheat the system. She reminds us all that there is nothing inherently African about corruption.

Robtel Neajai Pailey is a […]

  • Permalink Image Credit: Tawakkul Karman, Leymah Gbowee and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf display their awards during the presentation of the Nobel Peace Prize, 10 December 2011 (Harry Wad)Gallery

    Book Review: Women and Power in Postconflict Africa by Aili Mari Tripp

Book Review: Women and Power in Postconflict Africa by Aili Mari Tripp

In Women and Power in Postconflict Africa, Aili Mari Tripp provocatively argues that major conflict can have disruptive, egalitarian effects, catalysing women’s increased legislative representation. She demonstrates how conflict has often pushed women into socially valued domains, where they demonstrate their equal abilities and thereby undermine prevailing gender ideologies. Alice Evans explores the theoretical insights of this important scholarship, arguing […]

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