Serious bad blood has developed between the national chairman of the ruling Unity Party, Cllr. Varney G. Sherman, who is also Senior Senator for Grand Cape Mount County, and House Speaker Alex Tyler, who resigned from the party late last year, citing neglect and lack of consensus among UP executives.
The Speaker has subsequently founded a new party, the Liberian People Democratic Party or LPDP, duly registered and certificated by the National Elections Commission. His exit from the governing party has been debated in many quarters and sharply criticized by Chairman Varney Sherman, who thinks the move is an act of betrayal.
But the Speaker has angrily responded to Cllr. Sherman, describing his comments as rubbish and the man, who has headed the ruling party for almost two terms, a blatant liar. Responding to question about what he makes of comments from his former party leader, Tyler said: “I listened to the rubbish he said; it is complete rubbish and he is a blatant liar to tell the world he made me what I am is completely foolish; Varney Sherman is a coward.”
Chairman Sherman, at a formal homecoming ceremony organized by the party at its headquarters in Congo Town recently, challenged Tyler to equally resign from the Speakership in as much as he has resigned from the Unity Party on whose slot he was elected Speaker of the House of Representatives.
Speaker Tyler denied allegations that he took Cllr. Sherman to the ruling Unity Party, disclosing that he was a member of the Liberian Action Party (LAP) during the election so it was impossible to take Sherman to the UP.
”I am not one of those pushed around partisans; I will not allow myself to be pushed around by Sherman”, Tyler furiously said But Chairman Sherman maintains Tyler’s resignation from the governing UP is a betrayal of the struggle of the party, and indicated the Unity Party made the Speaker to be where he is today as a key government official, heading the First Branch of Government where he also serves as Representative for Bomi County.
According to him, it was Alex Tyler, who led him to the formation of a merger that amalgamated the Liberia Action Party, Liberia Unification Party and the Unity Party into a single political entity, which has produced the leadership of the country.
He said Tyler’s decision to form a party of his own is a disservice to the governing UP and betrayal to the people of Liberia. “I fought twice for Tyler to take him to the most powerful speakership post of the House of Representatives, where Mr. Tyler is now enjoying the fruits of the governing party”, Cllr. Sherman said.
Recently the LPDP, one of the newest political parties in Liberia to be certificated by the National Elections Commission held its first national convention in Kakata City Margibi County. Tyler has been serving as Speaker of the House of Representative for more than seven years since the impeachment of Representative Edwin Melvin Snowe, heading a body that is charged with amongst others, making laws and ratifying concession agreements.
Under his reign, the Legislature is accused of ratifying concessions worth US$16 billion without proper scrutiny, which has resulted to many failed concessions that do not create much needed jobs for the Liberian people.
But his fixed on contesting the presidency, Speaker Tyler recently told a gathering of jubilant supporters singing slogans in Kakata, Margibi County that he will be the next President of Liberia.
By Ethel A. Tweh-Edited by Jonathan Browne