The ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) and the opposition Unity Party appear to be introducing a new phenomenon in these elections characterized by a show of strength by the number of supporters both sides are capable of mobilizing into the streets for rallies.
CDCians’ recent appearance at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium in Monrovia for a campaign rally that left the capital and parts adjacent breathless still lingers in minds of many. But UP partisans’ defiance of heavy downpours throughout Sunday, 17 September to jam the same stadium at the command of their Standard Bearer, former Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai, has perhaps, left a rude awakening that the dice is cast and the crowd politics has already begun with barely three weeks before the poll.
One thing is clear though, President George Manneh Weah, an international soccer icon, is a magnet that attracts people for very obvious reasons, because of the prowess of his legs when he was active in the stadium during his soccer career.
He smartly brings that to politics, which no one can easily take away from him, winning the hearts and minds of Liberian youth, who are in majority and continue to see themselves in this icon that no one from Africa, Europe and rest of the world is yet to replace in football history.
However, members of the opposition seem resolved in standing up to him, as Weah the politician by taking the crowd away from him, and eventually confine his Presidency to one term at the ballot box.
This is the main mission of not only Candidate Joseph Boakai and the former ruling Unity Party, but all other parties and candidates in the race for the Presidency.
Many ordinary Liberians are looking forward to see if the UP’s show of crowd on Sunday amid heavy downpours would be translated into votes on polling day to secure its desire to return to power though it failed to do so in 2027 against Mr. Weah and the CDC.
The crowd produced on Sunday by the Unity Party is now a topic for potential debate with the one pulled by the ruling CDC on 10 days earlier.
CDCians believe that their crowd showing is unmasked by any political party, arguing that their numbers are far greater than that of the UP showing on Sunday. These numbers CDCians claimed can be directly translated into votes that if crowd alone was to be considered could guarantee them first-round victory.
But UP supporters remain defiant saying their showing on Sunday was just a warning that they are not a party to be taken for granted.
Meanwhile, it remains to be seen if these numbers will be translated into votes on October 10.