VP Rally Standoff in Clara Town – Residents Protest 3F Endorsement
Monrovia – Swelling support of Vice President Joseph Boakai’s presidential bid was met with resistance Wednesday in Clara Town after residents protested the VP visit to the area.
Report by Willie N. Tokpah – [email protected]
Eyewitnesses said the protest came about when the Unity Party Standard Bearer was on his way back from an endorsement program held by the Friends of the Future, 3F.
According to reporters on the scene, the protestor’s complained that their action was against the assembly of several supporters of the Liberian Vice President in outfits of Unity Party within their political terrain.
The protesters, most of who are believed to be supporters of the Congress for Democratic Change, reportedly set blockades infront of the VP convoy denying him use of the route leading to the main street of Monrovia.
They had placards with anti-support inscriptions to Boakai’s presidential bid.
According to observers the Protestors claimed that the Clara Town belt was a stronghold of the opposition Congress for Democratic Change and as such members of the Unity Party must not use that belt to showcase their strength.
They were seen chasing people wearing T-Shirts bearing the emblem of the Unity Party and the face of VP Boakai.
Most of those seen wearing the Unity Party T-Shirt ran for safety while others locked themselves in the Clara Town Hall until police arrival on the scene.
No injury was reported but members of the Unity Party have condemned the act.
The arrival of Police authority put the situation under control thus allowing frightened supporters to leave to their various destinations.
The Congress for Democratic Change has not given its official position on the matter.
Unity Party’s Deputy Secretary General for Press and Publicity Mo Ali has condemned the situation, noting that it speaks volume of electoral violence.
In a conversation with FrontPage Africa via Mobile Phone Wednesday, Ali blamed members of the Congress for Democratic Change whom he said were not practicing democratic tendency.
“They stood in front the Vice President convoy and because we did not want any form of confusion, we told our people to go the other way and sit in the hall,” Ali said.
According to Ali, it was anti-democratic for people who have opposition political interest to express their anger in such a manner.
He stated that the Unity Party does not have a problem with people expressing their antagonism but frowned against a blockage of the Unity Party standard bearer’s Convoy.
“We think that is totally wrong.”
“Everybody has the right to protest here, even George Weah can come and if I want to protest, I can go with my poster or placard with people and stand, but we don’t need to obstruct his movement,” Ali averred.
Ali further noted that the action on the part of the protestors was intended to provoke members of the running establishment into anger.
The actions he claimed were intended to create an ugly picture for the Vice President and his security had they counter reacted.
Ali noted that the incident was the first of its kind since support starting swelling for Boakai presidential bid.
He believes the incident is a bad precursor for the conduct of peaceful elections in Liberia comes October 10, 2017, calling on members of the opposition community to behave with civility during the process.