Montserrado County district sixth Representative, Edwin Melvin Snowe, Jr. is worried that a long list of opposition politicians seeking to separately contest for the Presidency in 2017 could give incumbent Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai an edge.
Hon. Snowe, who supported the ‘Ellen-Boakai’ Presidential ticket in 2011, is however cautioning that a strategy to retire the incumbent Vice President at the 2017 polls requires a collaborated and strong opposition.
Vice President Boakai recently accepted a petition from his kinsmen in Lofa County to vie for the nation’s highest seat.
Appearing on “Truth Breakfast”, a live talk show broadcast on Truth FM 96.1 in Paynesville, Snowe argued that it would be a chance for Mr. Boakai if one sees a ballot comes 2017 with long list of opposition leaders such as George Weah, Liberty Party’s Charles Brumskine, businessman Benoni Urey, Senator Prince Johnson, Governor Mills Jones, and Speaker Alex Tyler, all seeking the Presidency.
The Montserrado County Lawmaker, who comes from the x-ruling National Patriotic Party of former President Charles Taylor, has not hidden his support for opposition leader George Weah in recent years, including the 2014 senatorial battle in which Mr. Weah, of the Congress for Democratic Change convincingly defeated Robert Sirleaf, son of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, among several other contenders in Montserrado.
Snowe believes the surest way to retire Veep Boakai of the governing Unity Party is to form a serious coalition from the opposition block, which will push a candidate against the incumbent.
He said there are lot of young people in the ruling party including himself, that had thought President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and her Vice President Mr. Boakai “would have retired together” after two successive terms (12 years) ending in 2017.
While admitting that Mr. Boakai has his constitutional right to contest for the Presidency, Representative Snowe however expressed fears that the 2017 polls would be tough except a strong coalition is formed against the incumbent.
He claimed consensus building was something lacking in the ruling Unity Party, noting that hierarchy of the party would make public statements without the knowledge of others, and yet want everyone else to follow because the statement has been made.
Reacting to Mr. Boakai’s petition by his kinsmen during an alleged post-Ebola visit recently to Lofa, Mr. Snowe said he was not sure if the UP’s biggest member in the Legislature – Speaker Alex Tyler – was even aware of the “political twist” the Vice President’s visit to the county took.
Although not an insider of the governing Unity Party, but as a close political ally of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, Snowe’s tone seems to indicate that the ruling party is not ready to stand behind its second partisan for the 2017 race. By Winston W. Parley – Edited by Jonathan Browne