Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Locally grown produce sellers based in several rural parts of the country have urgently appealed to the Ministries of Commerce, Industry and Transport to intervene in the current hike in transport fares.In several encounters and interviews with the rural small businesspeople mainly women, they pointed out that majority of their profit margins from harvested produce ends up in the pockets of commercial drivers.For the past 15 years, rural locally grown produce sellers have complained on many occasions about the drastic hike in transport fares across the country.They complain that their cries and appeals have only been addressed with empty promises by Ministries of Commerce, Industry and Transport officials.Regrettably, sugar-coated assurances have come from the mouths of many government officials evading the hard socio-economic conditions of small rural businesspeople.Promises of help have not been translated into practical and realistic measures that could address the unending transport related challenges of the small rural businesspeople in the country.Meanwhile a majority of the urban markets greatly depend on rural locally produce sellers for the conveyance of critically needed commodities that would in turn balance the diets of urban dwellers.According to transport and commerce analysts, policies geared towards addressing the decades old transportation problems must be practical and reflect the realities on the ground in all parts of the country and the challenges faced by small rural businesspeople over the years in the country.“Our sentiments, calls, cries and appeals have fallen on deaf ears and dumped in the dust bin of history by the relevant agencies of past and present Liberian governments,” a disenchanted woman charged.Rural peanut producer Hawa Ballah Kollie, 45, told the Daily Observer over the weekend that she has not able to make any decent profit due to the high cost of transportation and other unbearable circumstances.Madam Kollie who brought to the Red-light Market over the weekend 12 bags of peanuts pointed out that she spent a huge amount of money to transport the harvested produce to Monrovia.“I’m currently doing business at a considerable loss owing to the hike in transport fares from Bong County to the urban markets of Monrovia,” Madam Kollie lamented.Cassava grower Betty B. Tokpa, 39, said that almost all of the sales of her cassava produce landed in the pockets of commercial drivers as a result of the hike in transport fares in many parts of the country.“I’m only working for the commercial drivers and other public service providers, hence something practical must be put in place by the Ministries of Commerce, Industry and Transport,” Madam Tokpa stressed.A cucumber and bitter ball grower, Youngor B. Mulbah, 55, of Margibi County intimated that on many occasions the harvested produce gets rotten owing to the scarcity of transport vehicles and hike in transport fares.“I want the Liberian government ministries responsible to decentralize their official functions in several parts of the country in order to monitor the transport fares throughout the country,” Madam Mulbah emphasized. Relax State of EmergencyIn related developments, some of the affected rural business women have sounded an urgent call on the Liberian Government to consider relaxing the State of Emergency in the country.The women explained that the State of Emergency has placed so many restrictions on the movement of critically needed locally grown and produced commodities in the country.“Consider our plight now and relax the State of Emergency so that we can be able to work, produce and supply the urban markets with the needed commodities,” the women urged.
Living Proof will present a contemporary Christmas concert under the direction of Steve Lively, 7 p.m. Wednesday at Grace Baptist Church, 22833 Copperhill Drive, Santa Clarita. Admission is free. Call (661) 296-8737. Shabbat Sounds Friday night service and Hanukkah party, 7 p.m. Friday at Temple Beth Ami, 23023 Hilse Lane, Newhall. Call (661) 255-6410. Christmas in Other Lands story time, 10 a.m. Saturday at Barnes & Noble, 23630 Valencia Blvd., Valencia. Call (661) 254-6604. Holiday celebration for children ages 2-12 will feature crafts, games, a bounce house, prizes and a visit from Santa, noon-2 p.m. Saturday at Dr. Richard Rioux Memorial Park, 26233 W. Faulkner Drive, Stevenson Ranch. Call (661) 222-9536. Hanukkah party, 2-4 p.m. Dec. 18 at Granary Square shopping center on the corner of Arroyo Park Drive and McBean Parkway, Valencia. Co-sponsored by Temple Beth Ami. Call Linda Hollingsworth at (661) 296-3408. Sixth annual holiday show, titled “Enjoying the Holidays,” 6:30-8:30 p.m. Dec. 18 at Ice Station Valencia, 27745 N. Smyth Drive, Valencia. Call (661) 775-8686 for ticket information. Drive-Through Living Nativity will feature hundreds of costumed actors performing scenes from the birth of Christ, 7-9 p.m. Dec. 18-19 at Santa Clarita United Methodist Church, 26640 Bouquet Canyon Road, Saugus. Call (661) 297-3783. Family caroling party will meet in the parking lot, 6:30 p.m. Dec. 21 at Santa Clarita United Methodist Church, 26640 Bouquet Canyon Road, Saugus. The caravan of singers will provide the gift of song and spread the holiday spirit to surrounding neighborhoods and return to the church around 8 p.m. to warm up with hot beverages and cookies. Call (661) 297-3783. Jam For Jesus will feature some of the top music artists in Southern California playing a variety of styles from pop to rock, 7-9 p.m. Dec. 21 at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 27265 Luther Drive, Canyon Country. Call (661) 252-0622. Animal Christmas story time, 10 a.m. Dec. 24 at Barnes & Noble, 23630 Valencia Blvd., Valencia. Call (661) 254-6604. Christmas Eve services with worship led by the Living Proof Choir and Steve Lively, 4 and 7 p.m. Dec. 24 at Grace Baptist Church, 22833 Copper Hill Drive, Santa Clarita. Traditional Communion celebration at 11 p.m. Call (661) 296-8737, Ext. 142. Christmas Eve service will feature the children’s musical “Once Upon a Night” at 5:30 and 7 p.m.; the adult and youth choirs, bells, dance and candlelight at 9 p.m.; and adult choirs, communion and candlelight at 11 p.m. Dec. 24 at Santa Clarita United Methodist Church, 26640 Bouquet Canyon Road, Saugus. Call (661) 297-3783. Hanukkah Party Havdalah, 6 p.m. Dec. 24 at Temple Beth Ami, 23023 Hilse Lane, Newhall. Bring a picnic lunch. Call (661) 255-6410. Hanukkah pancake breakfast will include breakfast, beverages and Hanukkah fun, 8:30-11:30 a.m. Dec. 25 at a private home in Stevenson Ranch. Cost: $15 for adults; children under 12 are free. Sponsored by Hadassah’s Kochava Group. Call Robin Bratlavsky at (661) 297-2960 or e-mail [email protected] Family Christmas service, 11 a.m. Dec. 25 at Santa Clarita United Methodist Church, 26640 Bouquet Canyon Road, Saugus. Call (661) 297-3783. Hanukkah Family Festival will feature children’s crafts, live music, entertainment, hot latkes and a raffle, 6 p.m. Dec. 28 at Westfield Valencia Town Center, 24201 Valencia Blvd., Valencia. Sponsored by Chabad of SCV. Call (661) 254-3434. To submit an event for the Holiday Calendar, contact Sharon Cotal at (661) 257-5256, fax her at (661) 257-5262, e-mail her at [email protected] or write to her at 24800 Avenue Rockefeller, Valencia, CA 91355. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! International Holidays is a celebration of Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and Las Posadas with dances from various countries presented by The Gypsy Folk Ensemble, 2-3 p.m. today in the meeting room at the Valencia Library, 23743 Valencia Blvd., Valencia. Call (661) 259-8942. Christmas concert will feature the music ministry groups bringing the joy of Christmas through bells, dance and song, 6 p.m. today at Santa Clarita United Methodist Church, 26640 Bouquet Canyon Road, Saugus. Call (661) 297-3783. Follow the Star, live Nativity scene, will feature more than 100 actors re-enacting the life of Christ, 6:30-8:30 p.m. today at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 27265 Luther Drive, Canyon Country. Admission is free. Food or cash donation to the Santa Clarita Valley Food Pantry is encouraged. Call (661) 252-0622 or visit www.followthestar.com. “The Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen’s Guild Dramatic Society’s Production of A Christmas Carol” will be presented, 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays through Dec. 23 at the Repertory East Playhouse, 24266 San Fernando Road, Newhall. Tickets: $16 for adults and $14 for students and seniors. Call (661) 288-0000. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals “A Christmas Carol” will be presented, 8 p.m. Fridays, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays through Dec. 22 and 6:30 p.m. today and Dec. 18 at the Canyon Theatre Guild, 24242 San Fernando Road, Newhall. Tickets: $13-$17 for adults and $10-$13 for students and seniors. Call (661) 799-2702. Puppet show, “Polly Polar Bear and The Prince of the Sea,” will be presented by Swazzle puppeteers, 3:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Newhall Library, 22704 9th St., Newhall. Call (661) 259-0750. Holiday stories and craft, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Valencia Library, 23743 W. Valencia Blvd., Valencia. Call (661) 259-8942. Children’s Holiday Music Program will feature holiday music performed by children from local elementary schools and performers from Vibe Performing Arts Studios, 5-7 p.m. Wednesdays through Dec. 21 outside the food court entrances at Westfield Valencia Town Center, 24201 Valencia Blvd., Valencia. Call (661) 298-1220. Holipalooza, a musical variety-show fundraiser, will feature talented local young people, 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Canyon Theatre Guild, 24242 San Fernando Road, Newhall. Tickets: $15-$25. Call (661) 799-2702.