-says party sinks in ‘disunity’
Dr. Toga Gaywea McIntosh, the only challenger to Vice President Joseph N. Boakai for the ruling Unity Party or UP presidential ticket has bowed out of the race. Not only has he arched out of the contest, but he has also quit the party citing undemocratic tenants within the ruling establishment.
His decision follows a recent complaint he filed before party executives requesting individuals heading the party’s pending convention to step aside for publicly declaring their support for the vice president. Dr. McIntosh during a press conference at his Congo Town residence in Monrovia on Wednesday, 29 June dressed in white African attire told the media that the basic principle of unity the partisans once love so dearly in the UP was now questionable.
The ruling party is expected to conduct national convention on July 8, in the provincial city of Gbarnga, Bong County in Central Liberia. The convention is expected to produce a standard bearer for 2017 elections and other key officials.
“In light of this, it is[with] heavy heart that I officially announce my membership withdrawal from the Unity Party. I have submitted a letter to the party’s officials to that effect. Although departing, I would like to state that I am proud to have been a Unity Partisan and the role I played in ensuring its success over the years. I would like to also personally thank all my supporters within the party that have tirelessly worked to get my message across and have supported me on my journey thus far,” he said.
McIntosh said it saddens him to admit that the conduct of the party in handling partisans’ grievances and concerns in recent years has fallen short of the manner in which the pioneers and founding fathers would have done under similar circumstance to maintain the cohesive bond within the party.
According to him, somewhere along the journey, the cardinal practices of the party’s belief in unity, integrity, honesty, decency, respect, discipline and an unwavering desire to see the betterment of Liberia has fallen to the wayside.
Dr. McIntosh, former Vice President of ECOWAS, explained that few weeks ago, he wrote the leadership of the Unity Party headed by indicted Senator Cllr. Varney Sherman a letter, objecting to the appointment of the chair and co-chair on the electoral committee for the upcoming national convention with the hope that the party will consider the merits of his claim and address the issues raised amicably and professionally.
But the former Foreign Minister noted, due to the fact that appointments were made only a couple of weeks before the scheduled convention, he had requested that the matter be addressed expediently. “To my outmost disappointment, neither acknowledgment of my letter nor reaction to the concern raised has yet to be addressed by anyone within the leadership of the party. From a professional and courteous perspective, I firmly believe this dead silence constitutes gross disrespect and disregard to a partisan, especially a partisan who has made significant contributions to the party and nation and showed a deep sense of commitment with countless sacrifice made for nearly 20 years.
He said one could only conclude that the party continuous indifference in addressing partisans’ concern signifies that any members of the UP maybe aggrieved, simply walk away, and nobody cares. “This doesn’t care’ attitude is neither the source nor the spirit of unity, but rather disunity,” he said.
Dr. McIntosh stressed that his desire, commitment, and faith to be a viable candidate for the impending 2017 Presidential and Representatives elections remains resolute more than ever. “Analyzing the nation’s current state of affairs, I would like to reiterate that I truly believe that I have the requisite competency, capabilities, experience together with the vision and determination to take our great country to the next level of sustained economic growth, human development, and national transformation. As a humble servant of the great people of Liberia, I ask my fellow compatriots to join me in this historical journey,” he concluded.
Meanwhile, when the national secretary general of the UP Mr. Wilmot Paye was contacted at his party’s headquarters in Oldest Congo Town in Monrovia Wednesday afternoon, about the resignation of Dr. McIntosh, Paye said his attention now is about his quest for the chairmanship of the party.
He added that nobody requested Dr. McIntosh to declare his intention for the standard bearer post, and also nobody asked him to resign so, it is less of interest to the party for now.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor -Editing by Jonathan Browne