Lobbies with US to fight Weah in 2023
By Winston W. Parley
Opposition Alternative National Congress (ANC) political leader Alexander B. Cummings’ latest statements and actions are clear indications he might break away from the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) to fight a lone–political battle against incumbent President George Manneh Weah for the presidency in the 2023 general elections.
Despite not being elected yet to head CPP’s ticket, Mr. Cummings, one of the leading forces who has been at the center of incessant political tension within the opposition establishment of four political parties, told the Voice of America (VOA) on Saturday, 16 October 2021 that he will challenge President Weah in 2023 for the presidency.
“As you know I ran in 2017 after only entering the race 18 months prior to the elections and out of about 18 – 20 candidates, we came in 5th and third in quite a few regions in the country,” said Mr. Cummings.
“And so, [we] decided that you know as we go towards 2023, we will challenge President Weah,” Cummings continued.
As he has always done in recent political events within the CPP, Mr. Cummings and his ANC announced their boycott of the induction ceremony CPP’s new chairman, former Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai on Friday, 15 October due to ANC’s alleged exclusion from the planning and organization of the turnover ceremony.
Amidst intensifying battle on the ground for Washington’s recognition between the opposition and the government, Cummings was in the United States last weekend when he spoke to VOA about his ongoing introductory meetings with top-level U.S. officials, letting them know his perspective on Liberia and to also know their interest.
He said these meetings were strictly introductory meetings, get-to-know-you meetings, letting them know who he is, what he brings to the table, understanding their interest, and answering questions about his perspective on Liberia.
“So it’s primarily, Peter (referring to VOA reporter Peter Klotey), introductory meeting just to get to know me and for me to share my background, my interest on what I could bring to bear to help Liberia become an even stronger and better partner to the United States,” Mr. Cummings said.
In the interview, Cummings claimed that it’s a fact that the country is not doing well under the presidency of Mr. Weah, saying he’s not performed well, and an ANC administration can offer a different alternative to Liberians.
Cummings said he has started the process of making his case to Liberians to consider him to replace President Weah in 2023 because has the solutions to the primary problem Liberians are faced with, which is a stagnant and shrinking economy.
“My private sector experience, my success in the private sector, my understanding of Economics, of Finance, of how investors think, what attracts them to invest, how business people think about investing and creating jobs and making money, I am uniquely qualified, Peter, with those skills and experiences to help grow the Liberian economy,” Cummings argued.
“And as I mentioned earlier, under President Weah’s leadership, it’s a fact, not because I’m in opposition, all the key economic indicators in our country are going the wrong way.” He explained.
Also addressing Liberians quest for the establishment of a War and Economic Crimes Court, Mr. Cummings said he is very supportive of establishing the court.
“And let me tell you why. Today in Liberia the level of impunity around corruption, around just basically following the rule of law…, you cannot have a country or organization or society where people can break the rules, they can break the laws and get away with it,” he said.
Stating reasons for his support to establish the War and Economic Crimes Court, Cummings explained that he seeks to fully put Liberia’s past behind and begin to reconcile the country to make sure justice is brought to people that were hurt and harmed from the civil war.
“And then the second reason why this is important is again, the level of corruption and impunity around that, and that’s why for me it’s important that it’s not just War but it’s Economic Crimes,” he said.
He believes that establishing the court forms the basis for re-establishing the proper rule of law in the country, end the level of impunity, and move the country forward.
But he also suggested that this cannot be achieved alone, adding that if elected president, he will engage all of the political actors in this effort.
“For this to be successful, for it to be done well, for it not to be a witch hunt, for true justice to prevail, for us to have both restorative and retributive justice, it has to be both – I think we all need to collectively agree to the process, agree the time table, find the funding and do it together as a country, as a people,” he noted.
He said without a collective effort of the actors, it could potentially become even more divisive, contrary to the objective of finally reconciling Liberians.
“And so, absolutely I will be enthusiastically suggesting, recommending engaging all political actors so that we can do this together,” he said.https://thenewdawnliberia.com/anc-to-boycott-boakais-induction-as-cpp-chair/