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‘I fail if Weah fails’

Former Liberian President Ellen Johnson – Sirleaf says she fails if her successor President George Manneh Weah’s administration fails, thus vowing to do what she can to make Mr. Weah’s government succeeds.

“Because if he fails, I fail and Liberia fails. So that’s why we all must do what we can to build that relationship to make sure … Liberia succeeds in this administration,” she told an interview Tuesday with her former Information Minister Atty. Lawrence Bropleh on state broadcaster ELBC.

Mrs. Sirleaf says she is obligated to doing whatever she can do to ensure that President Weah’s government is successful. The former Liberian first female elected President says she has a very good relationship with her successor President Weah, noting that she likes to see that good relationship maintained.

Responding to criticisms that she is being branded here as “wicked person” during the interview, Mrs. Sirleaf said “one or two wicked people” are calling her wicked person because she did not meet their political desire.

Her response to such criticism comes months after being expelled by former ruling Unity Party (UP) following her former Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai’s defeat in a presidential election last year.

Mrs. Sirleaf said people sought her support for the presidency and she frankly told them they can’t be president. “So people say come and support me, I want [to] be president, I tell you frankly you can’t be president … yeah, just like that and they know it. You see then they will go they will hold that against me, then they will go talk about me,” Mrs. Sirleaf notes.

Though Mrs. Sirleaf did not mention Mr. Boakai in her interview, but the former ruling Unity Party (UP’s) presidential ticket featuring her former vice president and former Speaker Emmanuel Nuquay was full of claims that she did not support Mr. Boakai’s quest to succeed her.

Mr. Boakai lost the election to former opposition Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) candidate Mr. George Manneh Weah who became Liberia’s 24th President in January.

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The immediate past female president says she observes that people have their own idea about what one should do or give, and when their own criteria is not met, they begin to talk about you.

“So where is it, where is it coming from? It’s just coming from one or two wicked people. Part of it political you know because I don’t meet whatever they felt was their political desire that I did not measure up to,” she adds.

She argues further on the issue of being branded a “wicked” person that people who have been with her over the years are still with her. She gives an instance that in her yard today, Mr. David Doe, the man that worked with her as messenger while she was just an Assistant Minister in the 70s at the Ministry of Finance is still with her.

To get clues to why people may be calling her wicked, former President Sirleaf says she she is a disciplinarian, elaborating that when she sends someone to buy something for her, she demands her change.

She says she helps to pay tuition for somebody who cannot work, but if she sees that you can work, she would send you to Mary to find work for you, apparently referring to her former General Service Agency Director General Madam Mary Broh who continues on the job in the Weah – led administration.

“But you come in and I see you can work, I say go to Mary I will tell Mary to find you work. Earn so you can have your honor and your dignity. If I say no, maybe they call that wicked,” she says.

Mrs. Sirleaf is cleared that for people who just want freebies, she is not used to freebies because she earns everything she has, saying “I work for it and I expect people to work for theirs.”

By Winston W. Parley

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