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2020’s political risks

There’s so much at stake seriously, as Liberia heads to the polls this December for a Special Senatorial election. Political actors and political parties can only watch and take steps which may put them in better position to face the 2023 presidential and legislative race.

Though the National Elections Commission (NEC) is yet to announce the opening of political campaign here, politicians and their followers have begun engaging the electorate on daily basis.

The highways of the 15 political sub-divisions of the country are busier so are the communities, and neighborhood community football fields, as aspirants spieled out their messages to lure potential voters to their direction.

During the 2019 senatorial by – election which brought opposition candidate Abraham Darius Dillon to the Liberian Senate, the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) suffered a great loss of a county it claims to be its stronghold – Montserrado.

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Mr. Dillon stood as opposition Liberty Party (LP) and the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) candidate in that election, and he is also contesting as an incumbent in this year’s senatorial election on the same ticket in Montserrrado.

Last year’s defeat of the ruling party in its proclaimed stronghold was under the watchful eyes of President George Manneh Weah and Vice President Jewel Howard – Taylor who, along with CDC hierarchies who campaigned vigorously to regain a slipping popularity ahead of the 2023 presidential election.

The CDC needs Montserrado, Grand Bassa and Nimba Counties in these senatorial elections in order to be in a comfortable position for the 2023 bid or else the ruling party’s days at the national echelon risks a closure at the next presidential election.

There are reports that President George Manneh Weah is strongly anticipating that the CDC wins Montserrado and Grand Bassa Counties.

To achieve this, reports say Mr. Weah and his CDC are making preparations and strong campaign tactics are being put in place to implement the mandate of the president.

The CPP which comprises LP, Unity Party (UP), Alternative National Congress (ANC) and All Liberian Party (ALP) also have a task to prove that it is a political force and must be taken serious by the Liberian people.

Liberty Party having lost its flag bearer Cllr. Charles Brumskine is now under the political leadership of Grand Bassa County Senator Nyonblee Karnga – Lawrence who is seeking re-election this December.

Karnga – Lawrence faces an uphill battle in Grand Bassa County for her re-election as former Senate Pro – tempore and former Foreign Minister Gbehnzohngar Milton Findley who was once rejected by the people of Bassa, joins the race to once again seek their blessing.

For Madam Lawrence to maintain her relevance at the level of the CPP and the Liberty Party, she must win the December 8 election or she may disappear from the political space.

Also for the CPP to remain to be seen as a beacon of hope for change for the nation’s highest seat, it must ensure that Sen. Dillon retains his senatorial seat.

This December the CPP under the chairmanship of ANC political leader Alexander Cummings, needs to win Nimba, Bong, Lofa, Grand Bassa and Montserrado Counties to make a major contender ahead of the 2023 elections.

The risk of failing to secure these vote – rich counties on the side of the CPP is that this opposition coalition may end up into a failed opposition bloc in presidential elections.

By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor–Edited by Winston W. Parley

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