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GeneralLiberia news

‘Koung deceiving voters’

–Gongloe supporters on war crimes court commitment

By Lincoln G. Peters 

Presidential hopeful Cllr. Taiwan Saye Gongloe’s supporters say Nimba Senator Jeremiah Koung is deceiving voters by announcing support for establishment of a war and economic crimes court.

The Gongloe supporters contend that Mr. Koung, running mate of Liberia’s opposition leader Amb. Joseph Nyumah Boakai, has no record of supporting war crimes court.

Mr. Koung is the political leader of the Movement for Democracy and Reconstruction (MDR), founded by former Liberian warlord, now Nimba Senator, Prince Y. Johnson.

The campaign to establish a war and economic crimes court often irritates Senator Johnson, notorious for overseeing the brutal murder of then-sitting President Samuel Kanyon Doe during the civil war.

There is no public record if Senator Johnson and Mr. Koung shared the same thoughts regarding the call for Liberia to establish a war crimes court.

Notwithstanding, the ‘Gongloe Youth Movement’ (GYM), 

a group of youthful volunteers from across the country supporting Cllr. Gongloe presidential, insist that Mr. Koung is announcing support for war crimes court because he wants state power.

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“This statement is not just a deception, but a call to blindfold the electorate to buy into their deception and falsehood to treat them as they have been treated by President Weah,” GYM alleged. 

The Gongloe supporters argued that there is no guarantee that Mr. Koung will support a war and economic crimes court when he has no record of supporting it in the past. 

“We can’t trust him even when his political godfather consistently frowns on people that call for the court,” they added.

Recently, Senator Koung pledged his commitment to the establishment of the war and economic crimes court. 

Senator Koung indicated that he supports the court’s establishment so that all Liberians that committed war crimes and crimes against humanity can account for their wrongs.

In reaction, GYM National Chairman Mr. Ephraim T. Nyumah described Senator Koung’s commitment as a political rhetoric that is intended to fool the electorate. 

In an exclusive telephone interview with the NewDawn Newspaper Thursday, 11 May 2023, Nyumah said while he supports the establishment of the court, he disagrees with its continued politicization.

“The first thing I want to say is that the call for the establishment of the war and economic crimes court can’t be used by politicians or people who [are] … ‘beneficiaries of [a] spoiled system’ to score political goals,” said Nyumah.

“This call from Senator Koung is a rhetoric, deception, and diabolical lie to secure state power,” Nyumah continued.

He alleged that Koung’s mission for his political marriage with the main opposition Unity Party is to save his political leader Mr. Johnson from being prosecuted.

He alleged that this was what they did with incumbent President George Manneh Weah and former President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf.

“In 2011, Senator Johnson supported President Sirleaf …, he also supported President Weah. With all those collaborations, Liberians saw how [the] leadership failed to establish the court and betrayed the Liberian people,” Nyumah argued.

Judging from the past, Nyumah contended that there is no guarantee that a Boakai administration will establish a war and economic crimes court when Senator Johnson supports the Noakai-Koung presidential ticket.

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