Monrovia – One of Liberia’s leading opposition political institutions, the Liberty Party has a void following the resignation Tuesday of its Chairman, Cllr. J. Fonati Koffa, FrontPageAfrica has learned.
Cllr. Koffa’s resignation comes just days after his appointment by President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf as Minister of State Without Portfolio. Cllr. Koffa had been highly-tipped to replace Justice Minister Benedict Sannoh but that appointment went to former River Gee Senator Fredrick Cherue. The party chairman’s pending exit means it will now have to return to the drawing board in hopes of finding a chairman to take the party into the 2017 presidential and legislative elections. The party’s political leader Charles Walker Brumskine has been in the mixed of numerous speculations regarding his own political future amid talk of multiple merger talks with George Weah’s Congress for Democratic Change and the ruling Unity Party. The party has participated in every election since 2005. In 2005, Brumskine placed third in the presidential poll, winning 13.9% of the vote. The party won three seats in the Senate and nine in the House of Representatives. Brumskine in October 2010 agreed with a short-lived coalition with the CDC which fell apart over who should head the ticket. Brumskine picked Franklin Siakor as his running mate but failed to duplicate his impressive 2005 showing in the 2011 presidential race securing only 5.5 percent of the votes. With Cllr. Koffa taking his exit, some party officials are pointing to Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence as a possible successor. While the popular first-term Senator is seen as a strong organizer, political observers say she could face a stern test as the party head into 2017 amid a rising tide of political discussions and negotiations for possible mergers amongst the more than 22 political parties expected to contest the 2017 elections.