Speaker Emmanuel James Nuquay, vice standard bearer of the governing Unity Party or UP, has clear his eyes from the euphoria that greeted his nomination last month by Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai to serve as his (Boakai’s) running mate for the October elections, beginning to face reality.
Nuquay cautions UP partisans not to rely on the many endorsements being received by the standard bearer as surety of victory at the polls, but to get out and campaign, if the ruling party should secure a third term. He says though the UP appreciates the endorsements coming from Liberians, it is binding that partisans, sympathizers and well-wishers go beyond endorsements and engage the public, communities, towns, villages and homes in their desire to retain the presidency.
Following his nomination, the first two attempts by the Boakia-Nuquay Ticket to visit a slum community in Monrovia Clara Town and Nuquay’s native Margibi County were greeted with citizens’ protest and jeer.
At Clara Town in Monrovia, protestors argued that the Vice President had never visited the community prior to his desire to contest for the presidency. Speaking over the weekend at the launch of the movement for the election of the Boakai-Nuquay Ticket, Nuquay stresses that endorsement of candidates in an electioneering period is good, but there should always be follow-ups to those making such commitment or else, they could be won over to other contenders.
Speaker Nuquay, who is a lawmaker from Margibi County, says aspiration of the ruling party is to take about 500,000 of the over 700,000 votes in Montserrado County, come October. He notes that if that number were achieved, coupled with additional votes from leeward counties, victory will be certain for the Unity Party.
According to him, supporters and partisans need to work harder, if they are determined to retain the nation’s highest office. Further motivating UP partisans, he emphasizes that opposition political parties should not be underestimated, as they are working around the clock to turn the table in their favor. Vice President Boakai is among nearly two dozen candidates for the presidency in a country of less than four million citizens.
Nuquay points out that victory will certainly come to the Liberian people, but only thru the ruling party, which has plans to continue improving the lives of the people.Also speaking at the event, UP campaign manager, former Foreign Minister Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan, agrees that underestimating the opposition would be greatest mistake, vowing that they are not leaving any stone unturned in these elections, as the party is prepared to engage every sector of the country.
Ngafuan urges all partisans to adapt “Jehovah Witness” style of campaign by going from door to door to engage the electorate, saying with that method, the Unity Party will be unstoppable.Meanwhile, Speaker Nuquay has donated US$10,000 to the movement for Boakai’s election to enable the group to print flyers and go out to engage the electorate ahead of the polls. The launch brought together thousands of supporters, partisans, and sympathizers.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor-Editing by Jonathan Browne