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GeneralLiberia news

Candidates boycott debate in Ganta

-Ahead of Nimba senatorial by-election

Two senatorial candidates in Nimba County have boycotted debate ahead of Tuesday, 23 April 2024, the county’s senatorial by-election.

By Thomas Domah / Nimba County

Nimba County, Liberia, April 19, 2024 – Two candidates for the April 23, 2024 by- election in Nimba County have reportedly boycotted a senatorial debate.

With funding from USAID, the debate organized by LMDI of Journalist John Kollie is intended for candidates in the senatorial race to sell themselves to voters. Two of the four candidates failed to show up.

The April 18, 2024, debate held in Ganta was the second time the same two candidates boycotted it. There have been no official reasons for the repeated boycott.

Candidates involved are former Senator Thomas S.Grupee from the Reformers National Congress (RNC) and the ruling Unity Party (UP’s) Candidate Nya D. Twayen, Jr. 

 The first and second debates were attended by People Unification Party (PUP) Representative Samuel G. Kogar and Armstrong Gobac Selekpoh of the Liberian National Union (UNU). Both attended the first debate in Tappita, and the second was held in Ganta, Nimba, and County, respectively.

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Candidates Nya D. Twayen, Jr. and Thomas S. Grupee told The NEW DAWN that they could not attend because of a time limitation.

According to them, they are trying to cover over 720 towns in all 19 administrative districts of the county, so there is no time left to go for debate.

While most Liberian politicians shun debate?

Nimba County self-proclaimed godfather Senator Prince Yormie Johnson, current Vice President Jeremiah Koung, and former President George Weah, among others, are on record for not attending debates, but their actions have been supported by voters, who are quoted as saying “that debate we will eat?”

The NEW DAWN gathered that most politicians who refused to attend national debates often get elected eventually.

Senator Prince Yormie Johnson attended once in 2005, which made him famous. Since then, he has never returned to the debate room, but he is spending his third nine (27) years as Senator for vote-rich Nimba County.

Former President Weah never showed up at any debate during his bid for the Presidency.

However, Liberia’s first female President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, is on record for attending several debates during her candidacy before and after becoming president. Editing by Jonathan Browne

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