-A Guest Commentary
With no modicum of doubt, the conglomeration of the four political parties which include; Unity Party, Alternative National Congress, Liberty Party and the All Liberian Party is a commendable initiative that the unsuspecting Liberian masses who continue to suffer the fate of extreme economic difficulties and grinding social misery look to change their untold story of perennial structural imbalances.
But the million dollar question pounding the heads of many Liberians is; is the CPP truly that political force that can shift the devastating plague of misrule in Liberia and usher in a new dawn full of hope and certainty? A rephrase to this question is; does the CPP has what it takes in term of formidability, viability, genuineness, loyalty and institutional regiment required to democratically oust George Weah’s kakistocracy, kleptocracy and neocracy?
Critical thinking Liberians are harboring suspicion as to whether the CPP arrangement is any genuine political arrangement in which they can repose confidence as the nation edges on to the defining moment of the 2020 midterm senatorial election scheduled for 8th December and the much heralded 2023 presidential election. Liberians in their generality are looking at these elections with profound enthusiasm to write the wrongs and position their country on a far better trajectory in terms of quality political governance.
This enthusiasm must be harnessed by a united, organized, progressive, focused, decisive and structured political amalgamation or collaboration—one that is firmly united in purpose and its leaders ready and willing to put above everything else the interest of their country and people. Not a political collaboration that is marred by internal conspiracy theories and discrepancies. Not a collaboration where the leaders do not seem to trust and respect each other and worse of all, harboring the egregious behavior of exclusion where some hold on to the parochial notion that one leader doesn’t have any right to express his aspiration or ambition to be President lest to think of heading the collaboration ticket. Why hatch such disingenuous notion against another leader with in your ranks? Not a collaboration where the Leaders and their confidants do not seem to be institutionally disciplined and loyal. Not a collaboration where individual parties, leaders and members are mostly loyal to their respective parties and put less emphasis on the survivability of the collaboration which they have forged and was greeted with huge public delight and commendation.
The negative vibes oozing out of the CPP do not assure critical thinking Liberians that the struggling Liberians who are desperately seeking answer during these critical periods of political governance and national existence cannot hope on it as a genuine vehicle for viable change in Liberia. For if we see the very decadent vices or anomalies that have saturated and battered Liberia for ages mushrooming in the CPP the question then arises; what change are they seeking to effectuate? Can we relate this to the proverbial analogy of “old wine in new battles”? That these people are only desperately seeking to grab political power with the intent of coming to power for the sole purpose of salvaging their vested political and economic interest. We hope not. But if these contradictions continue to traverse the realm of the CPP, we will be impelled to conclude that the CPP is merely “business as usual”, as such, the CPP makes no difference from the current ruthlessly corrupt and nefarious regime of George Weah, and hence, it is going nowhere.
How can the CPP be a force of good or a genuine alternative to the failing regime of Weah when peace and oneness are not obtaining within? How can the CPP be a force to liberate the Liberian people from the state of continual indignation and uncertainty when the leaders can hardly muster the temerity to go in the room and address the burning issues that matter to the existence and going concern of the institution? For example; it has become public knowledge that the political Leader of the ALP Benoni Urey has a personal problem with the ANC political Leader Alexander Cummings and has not pretended about that as it can be seen in his rasping deportment towards Cummings. What has he taken such unkind posture against his colleague, Cummings? What is the issue? We don’t know but some within the CPP have confided that Urey pugnacious resistance towards Cummings is upon the fact that Cummings has publicly pontificated his desire to head the CPP ticket and be President for Liberia. Urey believes Cummings is a newcomer and doesn’t have the right to hold any ambition of such. But should one’s political or presidential ambition be anchored and contingent on his/her longevity in the political field? Does the Liberian constitution say that? Does the CPP framework say that? Is it not the democratic process that should determine as to who is qualified and suitable to be president?
While the unwarranted and foolhardy attack on Cummings is degenerating by the day, Unity Party political Leader Joseph Boakai and Nyonblee Kangar-Lawrence of the Liberty Party for reason(s) best known to only them are looking on in deafening silence and doing nothing about what seems an existential threat to the survival of the CPP. We are stunned by the silence and lackadaisical attitude displayed by Boakai and Kangar-Lawrence in the face of looming danger slowly creeping in the walls of the CPP? Why are they silent? Why are they not calling these two men in the room to resolve whatsoever difference at hand? Like Urey, Nyonblee and Boakai, Cummings must find the CPP a safe place to espouse his political ambition and no one should humiliate him for simply exercising his right. If the CPP desires national leadership then it has to be united, genuine, tolerant, mature, responsible, issue-driven, fundamental in its approaches, ideological and non-egotistic? If these values and tendencies cannot be the hallmark on which the CPP thrives on then we see no need for a collaboration.
Liberia is at a critical juncture, the oldest African republic at age 173 but nothing tangible to show. Why? Because political governance defrauded the people, Liberian politicians have continually failed the people. One political establishment after the other would come and promise the people socioeconomic empowerment, political stability, good governance, national coexistence, peace and tranquility and a Liberia that works for all its people, not the few but the moment power is obtained, we see the extension of the rotten layer; increased depravation, impoverishment and agony of the Liberian people at even extreme level, a condition the nation is currently experiencing at the hands of George Weah and his cult of thieves.
To change this no doubt requires a genuinely consolidated and viable political force that thrives on cutting-edge approaches and savvy winning strategies and when elected, would embark on a revolutionary governance approach that puts the emphasis squarely on the people and the structural issues that matter to them. A CPP that is riddled with mistrust, personality contest, suspicions, conspiracy theories, subversive maneuverings and belligerent predispositions cannot change the ugly narratives and offers no hope for the struggling Liberian masses.
Finally, it must be made abundantly clear that the CPP is seeking to remove through the ballot box an incumbent government which has so much money, influence, connection and guns coupled with the reality that the current President in George Weah is clearly a narcissist whose cronies are seeking to transform into a “Benevolent Dictator”, which should signal to the CPP that it has a serious uphill battle at hand. As such, it must have it house in order, its game plan together, strategies intact and its forces fully united on a rare alert in order to make George Weah a history for once. Is the CPP ready? A Hint to the wise!
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