The ruling Coalition for Democratic Change harshly reacts to opposition leader Alexander Cummings’ challenge to debate with President George Manneh Weah on governance issues, rather, asking the chairman of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) to show his contributions towards peace and stability here.
Speaking ina press conference at the CDC headquarters in Congo Town Wednesday, August 19, national chairman MulbahMorlu said, it is unspeakable that the national chairman of a political party would seek to debate with a sitting president far ahead of electioneering period.
“When have you heard about president going to a debate with chairman of a political party outside election period? Even if we were in a presidential campaign period, what’re your survey statics? See the United States; you don’t go to certain debate except you attain certain poll numbers”, the ruling party argues.
Morluclaims that Mr. Cummings, who wants to debate with President Weah has failed to manage his political party to the extent that the Alternative National Congress has terribly failed to produce legislators despite millions spent during the past elections and recent by-elections.
Last week, Mr. Cummings, political leader of the Alternative National Congress (ANC) and current chairman of the CPP, said he prefers to have a debate with President George Weah than the President’s surrogates.
“The truth is, there is no debate that this Weah-led government is corrupt, incompetent, and that as a result, Liberians are suffering! But if they are serious about a debate, I prefer to debate Pres. Weah himself,” Cummings wrote on his Facebook page.
His comments came days after Minister of State for Presidential Affairs Nathaniel Falo McGill took to social media, challenging the CPP chairman to a national debate on the president’s performance.
According to Minister McGill, Cummings should be thinking about holding primaries for the pending senatorial elections and stop handpicking politics, which he said, is affecting some people who are part of the CPP and the ANC as a whole.
“Look at the way the Opposition is run under this life-style conflicted man; under him they don’t hold primaries, denying people their fundamental right. Few big boys will sit in a living room and share the political geographical spots among the political parties, ahead of major election, what terrible practice of politics in contemporary time.”
He noted that Cummings resides across the Atlantic Ocean and only runs to Monrovia with high expectation of wanting to be president, but questioned the opposition leader’s contributions to Liberia since his date of birth.
According to chairman Morlu,President Weah is a senior debater,claiming that Mr. Weah debated actively during the 2005 presidential election when Cummings was still busy selling coo cola drinks in the streets of the United States.
He recalls that during the administration of former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Weah, then peace ambassador contributed to the peace process that ended 14 years of bitter civil unrest and later became senator for Montserrado County, but Cummings is yet to show his contributions.
He adds that the only contributions of Cummings since his sudden appearance to politics is to support protest and accompany people who do not respect the rule of law.
“President Sirleaf did what she could do and we give her some credits; but she was a caretaker, assisted heavily by the international community. With President, Weah, he’s being assisted but not compared to the 12 yrs of Sirleaf because it’s an immediate post-conflict era”, he argues.
Ahead of midterm senatorial elections in December, the political atmosphere in Liberia is being charged with the ruling Coalition and the opposition CPP taunting each other, sometime evoking violence.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor–Editing by Jonathan Browne