Main Menu

Liberia: Profiling A Rural Woman Who Lost Everything For Politics

Ms. Annie-Toe


27-year-old Annie Toe, popularly known as the female general; resides in Bomi County, Western Liberia about 51 kilometers drive away from the Capital Monrovia.

Like many rural women here, Annie’s upbringing was very difficult as her parents struggled to have her educated. As a teenager, she was forced to assume full responsibility for herself as she opted to choose the path of politics.

“I have been involved in national politics since 2017 and my decision to get into politics is to the role of women; especially rural women are represented and respected at the national and regional levels,” she said.

A Challenging  Journey

Annie left the Capitol Monrovia in 2016 and settled in her home town— Gba, Bomi County; serving as a trailblazer to lure more women into active politics.

While in Bomi, she organized a group of young women under the disguise of helping to improve sanitation in the community; not knowing it was a strategy to acquaint the women with their rights to engage into politics.

Like many rural settlements in Liberia, traditional women are barred from engaging in active politics with their male counterparts, hence breaking the barriers and meeting the finish lines became a daunting challenge for Annie.

“I organized several women, about 516 of them under the banner—The United Women in 2020. We were involved with cleaning the streets and every time we finished cleaning up; we would meet somewhere I used to talk with women, motivating them about the impact of women’s involvement in politics,” she decided.

Annie’s strategy works; as the women become sensitized about their roles in politics and the impact on the state in general.

As the 2020 midterm senatorial elections were gradually approaching, the women moved into their communities, as the call for women participation into politics started resonating with a majority of the population.

On the overall, Liberia has already set a great distinction of being the first African nation to elect a female president, and a female Vice President. Despite the progress, state institutions remain largely male dominated.

The country is ranked 156th of 162 countries on the Gender Inequality Index and 163 out of 185 countries on the list of women in national parliaments; a statistics Annie says needs to be changed.

Changing the Mindset

As a means of changing the mindset of a male dominant society like Gba, she transitioned to rehabilitating disadvantaged youths who are on illicit drugs. Her goal is to rehabilitate the youth to ensure they become better citizens.

“We succeeded in rehabilitating someone who lives on drugs for 16 years. I have spoken to a number of women who have been involved with prosecution and at the end of the day; we educate them about women’s involvement with politics,” Annie pointed out.

As her impacts became felt into the society, Annie got wildly recognized and became known as the “Female General,” a name that got her nationally recognized.

“I also had a mini business, profits from there were used to feed my daughter and also assist my husband…I started observing the business was declining, it became a problem as my husband was never a support arm,” she indicated.

A hard price to pay

After seven years, Annie saw her husband walk away from the relationship, citing her refusal to abandon her political quest as his reliance. To date, Annie is now a single mother struggling to fend for her child.

“My husband used to complained that I was getting too much with politics and not paying much attention to the home and many times politicians would arranged meetings at night so attending those strategic meetings was a problem for me because my husband was never interested so he walked away leaving me with the child,” she indicated in a rather sad mood. Compounding the issue for Annie—she saw her house set-ablaze by rival politicians.


As the political campaign activities were heating up during the elections, Annie said she became exposed to threats and bullying, stressing that unknown men succeeded in setting her house ablaze.

“I no longer have a husband because of politics; I also lost my used clothes business sadly on September 1, 2023, my house got burned because of the same politics. I lost everything!” Annie asserts.

Defying Charms

The 27-year-old has so far survived a number of attacks from her political rivals who have used charms to silence her.

Some male political rivals believe Annie has transitioned to be a trade blazer and the voice of women in rural Bomi as such they have used a number of strategies such as internet bullying, physical, psychological attacks as well as charms to silence her but she has remained unmoved.

“Too many attacks have been made against me, but I am not deterred! See my leg, it got swollen after I indirectly stepped on a charm. They have used so many methods to keep me quiet but I am still holding on. I know it’s risky but what to do? If I quit, it means I have betrayed the struggle of the women here. So my life is on the line,” she explains in a rather sad mood.

Meanwhile, as a determined woman who has successfully abandoned her personal desire to push for women’s political participation, Annie underscored the need for assistance toward empowering rural women in politics.

She said there are a lot more women who want to engage into politics, but due to the lack of support and education; they are forced to abandon their quest.

In many instances, rural women actively involved in politics are threatened with the lack of support from their male counterparts who accused them of engaging in extra marital affairs.

“Several women are here but they are afraid! Imagine a rural woman telling her husband she is going to attend a political meeting by night. Your husband will never agree, they will see you as a cheater,” Annie emphasized.

In order to change the narrative, Annie dreamed of securing an opportunity to educate women and male on the need to protect their political choices.

“For me I will never stop! I have lost everything; I will continue to push women’s issues. Things will be fine when someone is willing to pay the price, and I have made myself available,” she said in a rather emotional tone.

Recognizing her role

A minute portion of the society has so far recognized Annie’s role and continue to hail her for her bravery.

To elevate her voice, the management of Trust FM a community radio based in Gba, has provide a free one hour airtime every Saturday to use the radio and propagate her vision for women’s inclusion.

As we conclude the interview, Annie appealed to state actors to ensure the legislation of affirmative action to help address the exclusion of women in politics.

So far, Liberia has adopted a number of regional and international frameworks geared toward advancing women’s political and civic rights, but practically, women’s representations on the average have taken a downward trend. “This reporting was supported by the International Women’s Media Foundation and NDI’s VAW-PM Program.”

One Comment to Liberia: Profiling A Rural Woman Who Lost Everything For Politics

  1. Her accounts are so sad and it signifies how this make dominant society have narrow the elevation of women. It’s her right to get involved with politics, Women are not less human. It pains my heart to read that this lady is now a single mother after loosing her home, husband and others. Very

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *