Monrovia – No longer able to hold the fire, former NOCAL Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Dr. Christopher Neyor, is pleading for cease-fire in order to end the feud between him and President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
“I apologize to you for whatever I did knowingly or unknowingly to cause you harm directly or indirectly inclusive of my Open Letter of June 2014” – Dr. Christopher Neyor, Former CEO, NOCAL
The spat between the pair heightened during the 2014 Senatorial race, when President Sirleaf’s son contested the Montserrado County seat at the Liberian Senate.
The presence of the President’s “darling boy” – Robert A. Sirleaf – in that senatorial race, which was also contested by Dr. Neyor, dug out issues that battered up the relationship between former NOCAL CEO and his then boss.
They have since not been in good rapport.
But Dr. Neyor is unable to continue that path. On December 1, 2017, he wrote President Sirleaf asking for “personal reconciliation”.
Dr. Neyor extending an olive branch to Sirleaf is pretty unprecedented, especially as the curtains fall on the regime.
In the letter, a copy of which has been obtained by FPA, Dr. Neyor writes: “As your administration draws to a close in a couple of months [couple of days], I want to reach out to you for a personal reconciliation before your departure from the presidency.
“Our country is at a crossroad in its continuing journey towards a just and prosperous society built on the foundation of democracy.”
“We cannot make further progress on that journey to renewal and sustained human development if we do not first have our national healing and reconciliation.”
“Our country is becoming dangerously polarized politically."
"If we cannot resolve our hurts and differences and each of our citizens assured of and confident of equal opportunity where those elected and appointed in accordance with our Constitution and the laws ensure genuine inclusive government and justice and share the collective wealth of our nation, the post-Ellen Johnson Sirleaf era will remain fragile and unstable.
“We as a people cannot afford for that polarization to escalate into violence again. We must reconcile and we must heal and we must genuinely love each other and our homeland as a prerequisite for any social and economic progress”.
He noted that it is high time both he and President Sirleaf put aside their egos and pride and reaccept one another.
But setting the pace for reconciliation, Dr. Neyor extended an olive branch to his former boss and a somewhat sincere apology.
“I apologize to you for whatever I did knowingly or unknowingly to cause you harm directly or indirectly inclusive of my Open Letter of June 2014,” he wrote.
He noted that his apology is not based on any expectation from the President as she is left with just few days; rather, it was ignited by his “Christian virtues” and with a touch of religion, adding; “To err is human and to forgive is divine”.
In June 2014, Dr. Neyor, who was appointed by President Sirleaf to what was believed to be one of the most lucrative posts, wrote a damning open letter accusing President Sirleaf of planning to “destroy me so that your son Robert A. Sirleaf can have an easy path to the Senate seat for Montserrado County and eventually to the Presidency of Liberia in the 2017 election to succeed you.”
Robert Sirleaf served as Board Chairman of NOCAL at the same time Neyor was the Chief Executive Officer of the once-booming oil company.
The feud with the President started or perhaps deepened in 2014 when both Dr. Neyor and Robert Sirleaf decided to contest the Montserrado County Senatorial seat.
Dr. Neyor was of the impression that President Sirleaf, in her bid to give her son an upper hand in the race, maneuvered to have him politically strangulated to weaken his constituencies in that election.
He wrote in the open letter: “I met with you on April 24 at your Ministry of Foreign Affairs office in presence of your Chief of Staff Dr. Edward McClain and informed you of my intent to honor petitions to contest the Montserrado County Senate seat in the October 2014 Special Senatorial Elections in order to help the National Legislature be more responsive to the critical issues of the country.
“You inquired why I wasn’t running for the Rivercess Senate seat instead and I explained among other things that I was born and raised in Montserrado County to a father, who came from Morweh in Rivercess and I was a registered voter in Montserrado. You stated it would be a difficult task for me but I told you that elections is about number and from survey, I had the number to win in the county. “
“You told me then that others had approached you for the same seat and that you would do your own survey and see whom to support. I said that was fair enough for I was just informing you out of courtesy but not necessarily for your support.”
“Since I left your office that day and began consultations with cross section of Montserrado citizens, you have been doing everything to undermine my participation in the election in favor of your son whom you did not reveal to me that he intended running for the same seat. “
“You have been trying hard to coerce officials of your government who are supporting or sympathizing with my anticipated candidacy to work with your son instead even when some advised it would not be a good idea for your son to contest the Montserrado County Senate seat.”
Meanwhile, the Office of the President is yet to comment on Neyor’s apologetic letter.