Liberia: Ex-Montserrado County District 15 Contestant Slams Infighting Within Collaboration of Political Parties
Monrovia – Ms. Telia Urey, a former contestant in the recently-led District No. 15 Representatives’ elections has called on youths within the Collaboration of Political Parties(CPP) to never allow themselves to be used by politicians in the alliance’s hierarchy to fight pointless and unnecessary battles. “We are better than that and deserve more,” Ms. Urey declared in a Facebook post at the weekend.
Report by Rodney D. Sieh, [email protected]
Her comments come in the wake of a rapidly deteriorating and nagging state of uncertainty within the nearly eight-month-old attempt at forming a formidable collaboration to take on the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change in next year’s Mid Term and the 2023 presidential and legislative elections.
The feud which had been in the air for weeks, finally escalated recently when Mr. Benoni Urey, head of the Alternative National Congress took aim at Mr. Alexander Cummings, head of the Alternative National Congress, questioning his leadership credentials while expressing his preference for former Vice President Joseph Boakai as presidential candidate in the 2023 presidential race.
The tension between the two men heightened Sunday when Mr. Urey, the current head of the CPP used a social media Facebook TV platform to question the readiness of Mr. Cummings for the Presidency, expressing his preference for former Vice President Joseph Boakai.
Throwing a pointed jab at Mr. Cummings, Mr. Urey said: “You don’t elect people who just come from a country and come to another country and want to be president. You elect people based on their experience and based on their reputation. And I think of the 3 candidates, Joe Boakai has the most experience; Joe Boakai has stood the test of time, and he’s a relatively decent person.”
Mr. Cummings, later issued a statement expressing surprise at Mr. Urey’s outburst. “I have read with grave disappointment, insinuations, from someone who I thought was a good colleague, Mr. Benoni Urey that I, Alexander Cummings, am deviating from the plans of the Collaboration of Political Parties(CPP). To the contrary, this is far from the truth,” Mr. Cumming averred.
The ANC leader said since the four political parties agreed to come together on February 21, 2019 and affixed their signatures to the document of collaboration, he has supported Mr. Urey and respected him as the rotational chair of the CPP and offered him his unflinching support. “The Alternative National Congress(ANC) wholeheartedly supported the June 7th Save the State Protest and I personally was on the campaign trail to support his daughter and ALP’s candidate, Telia Urey’s quest for the District No. 15 Representative’s seat. Incidentally, she was the best candidate and is an impressive young leader.”
The pair met recently in a bit to squash differences between their supporters and surrogates but the feud continues to linger.
Expressing a preference of constructive engagements, Ms. Urey said: “We must teach our “leaders” what constructive engagement is! We may not always agree, but we must be able to peacefully co-exist void of hate! CPP will never be a 4 to 10 man show.”
As a leader in the CPP, she charged, the interest of more than a million of our supporters is more important to her than any other interest. “Our supporters have made it clear that they want unity amongst us, so we must unite! Our supporters also need effective leadership and we MUST give it to them, if we are serious about transforming Liberia. We must not limit ourselves to mediocrity.”
Sadly, she said, the ongoing fighting is veering away from the interest of the Liberian people and becoming more about self-aggrandizement for a few. “None of the current fighting in the CPP is about Liberia or the Liberian people! It’s not about how to move our nation forward! It’s a few people fighting for themselves! Sad! Sad! Sad!.”
Former Vice President Boakai, who has been mute on the ongoing squabbles so far is said to be monitoring the situation and will comment on the matter shortly while stating that all political leaders of the CPP are working to ensure that the CPP remains focused on its purpose.
Political observers are however keen to point out that the lingering distrusts, uncertainty and ego-tripping are unlikely to go away any time soon as rival supporters within an effort first seen as offer an alternative for Liberia, continue to engage in social media smackdowns in hopes of showing numerical strengths and political advantage while ignoring the big picture and what is really at stake.