The leader of the Alternative National Congress (ANC), Mr. Alexander B. Cummings, wraps up his visit to the United States after holding fruitful meetings with several US policymakers, Congress members, Senior Staffers of key Congressional Offices, and influential Think Tanks in Washington, DC and is expected back in Liberia today, Wednesday, 27 October 2021.
An ANC press release issued in Monrovia says Mr. Cummings also held discussions with Liberian Communities in Minnesota, Atlanta, and Washington, DC.
The meetings were intended to reassure Liberians in the United States of his commitment to ensuring genuine democratic change and economic transformation in Liberia.
Mr. Cummings is seeking the presidency through the ballots due in a general election in 2023. As a constituent member of the opposition bloc Collaborating Political Parties (CPP), he seeks to run on the CPP ticket to battle against incumbent President George Manneh Weah of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC).
The ANC said Mr. Cummings also used his meetings in the U.S. to mobilize the support of Liberians for the democratic process back home and for their continued direct active participation in developing the country and alleviating economic hardships their compatriots have been subjected to for far too long.
He reiterated his desire to seek the nomination of the Collaborating Political Parties in the forthcoming elections in 2023 despite recent distractions from within and without which have rocked the foundation of the CPP.
He assured that the noble ideals of good governance, accountability, integrity, and transparency which the CPP promised the Liberian people are upheld against all odds.
It can be noted that the United States has the single largest Diaspora Liberians and Liberian-Americans estimated at 100,000 in communities across that country. Liberia receives annually on average $300 million remittances from this Diaspora. Liberia’s yearly budget is about $500 million. Diaspora Liberians in the United States have impacted America’s policies towards ending Liberia’s civil conflict and restoring peace and building a democratic, prosperous Liberia.
Meanwhile, Mr. Cummings has held an hour-long meeting with Congressman Chris Smith, Republican, New Jersey, who is a senior member of the Foreign Affairs Committee and ranking member of its Africa, Global Health, Human Rights and International Organizations Subcommittee.
Congressman Smith is Co-Chair of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission. The discussions focused on support for the consolidation of democracy and the rule of law in Liberia. Congressman Smith has demonstrated a history of keen interest in Liberia.
He worked with the Obama Administration to secure an appropriation for the U.S. contribution to fight the deadly Ebola virus outbreak in Liberia.
Congressman Smith said, “Some might ask why we are focusing today on Liberia, a small country of roughly 5 million people, when there are such outstanding problems in other parts of Africa — first and foremost, Ethiopia and Nigeria. The answer to that is twofold — first because I believe attention shown by Congress can have a significant and positive impact in Liberia.
Second, however, is because the United States owes a moral duty to the people of Liberia. Liberia is unique among all other countries of the world. There is no other country whose history is so intertwined with that of the United States, founded as it was by free American slaves.”
Congress this year passed and the President signed a law establishing Juneteenth as a national holiday, which provided Americans an occasion to reflect upon the history of slavery and liberation. As part of that reflection, Americans should acknowledge that desire for liberty, which inspired the establishment of the Liberian nation, yet which remains only partially fulfilled.
While ultimately Liberia’s fate lies in the hands of the Liberian people, the Lantos Commission can provide a platform to elevate the question of justice and accountability for the Liberian people,” he concluded.
Following his meeting with Congressman Smith, the ANC leader also called on the offices of several high-level policymakers and professionals of both the Democratic and Republican parties of the Africa Subcommittees of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Senate Foreign Relations Committee, respectively, including on the Directors of Staff of California Congresswoman and former head of the Congressional Black Caucus, Karen Bass, Congressman Gregory Meeks of New York, Senator Jack Reed of Rhode Island, and Senator James E. Risch of Idaho.
Congresswoman Bass is Chair of the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Human Rights, and International Organizations. She also serves on the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism. She was Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus 2019-2020.
She is serving her 6th term in the House. She supports economic growth and partnerships with the African Continent and expanding trade between Africa and the United States. She was a strong supporter of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). Congresswoman Bass visited Liberia during the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf administration.
During the meetings, Mr. Cummings, who is one of four political leaders of the CPP, spoke extensively about his vision for the consolidation of peace and democracy in Liberia and his plans for transforming the Liberian economy and expediting the socio-economic development of the Country.
Mr. Cummings asked that Liberia not be abandoned, and emphasized that the country must be supported. He also informed the US policymakers that next year Liberia will observe 200 years since the settlers from America landed on the West African Coast in 1822.
He called on Americans to identify with and support this significant milestone given Liberia’s traditional and political ties with the US. During the meetings, the ANC Leader who is a former executive of Coca-Cola International, a multi-billion dollar US Company, also met with Dr. Michael Rubin of the American Enterprise Institute, Dr. Anthony Kim of the Heritage Foundation, and Ambassador Peter Pham, of the Atlantic Council respectively.
A key highlight of the various meetings with the think tank was to explore ways and means for future partnerships and collaborations to accelerate Liberia’s development processes.
The American Enterprise Institute, of which Dr. Rubin is a senior member, is a Washington, D.C.–based think tank that researches government, politics, economics, and social welfare. Its highlight on a country generates huge investment interest in that country. Similarly, Dr. Kim is Editor of the Index of Economic Freedom at the Heritage Foundation.
It can be recalled that following a brief experience with the Liberia Bank for Development and Investment (LBDI), Mr. Cummings spent most of his professional life working with major international corporations, including Coca-Cola and Pillsbury international.
As an executive of Coca-Cola, he was responsible for billions of dollars entrusted to his care to administer. He faced rigorous annual audits and was never once found in corruption or misappropriation. He retired honorably and decided to offer his services to his country.
He has established the Cummings Foundation which has invested more than $2 million into health, women, and youth empowerment programs and education including the only top-notch Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) school in the country. He has also invested heavily in real estate.https://thenewdawnliberia.com/cummings-dreams-of-cpp-victory/–Press release