It is just less than three years to the holding of another Presidential Election in Liberia. While there may be less noise about aspirants for the Presidency, few- Rev. Kennedy Sandy, Cllr. Charles W. Brumskine and Permanent Liberian Businessman Benoni A. Urey, have already made their intentions known for 2017 for now.
Rev. Sandy, who resigned sometimes last year as a Commissioner of the Constitution Review Commission, will be attempting the presidency for the second time, Cllr. Brumskine, who announced his retirement from Liberian politics after sustaining defeat at the hands of incumbent President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf in 2011, will be trying again for the third. Permanent Businessman Urey is the new comer.
Even though Rev. Sandy is yet to commence pre-election awareness, Brumskine and Urey have been moving about across the country.
But one big difference between the two- Cllr. Brumskine of the Liberty Party and Businessman Urey is the message being taken to the people. While the former may be thriving on the path of tribal sentiments, especially among the Bassa-speaking people- something he has always done in 2005 and 2011 to his own disadvantage, the latter’s main focus is the unity of the nation as the only way for development and progress.
Many had anticipated that as a new comer, Benoni Urey would have missed his steps, but associating with a few politicians and political parties, as well as understanding what practical politics entails, Urey may be singing the song to which many well-meaning Liberians may want to listen- the message of peace, unity, development and progress.
Perhaps, his strength is on the basis of his background as a farmer and businessman.
Urey’s growth such as he is today is against the backdrop of United Nations travel ban that he, however, utilized to expand his economic activities not only in Careysburg, Montserrado County, but Konola in Margibi and Bong Counties where he runs a very huge rubber plantation and other businesses. This is why it was of no surprise for the U.N Panel of Experts, in its last report on Liberia, to describe him as a person of no threat to the peace and stability to Liberia, even though it was very that the travel ban imposed on him was very political. They had actually valued him, from all of their investigations, and realized that he was actually a true and productive Liberian, and with such potential investments of his in a country emerging out of crisis, it was rational and un-necessary to continue the travel ban.
By even mentioning his Presidential ambition in its report to the Security Council based on the facts seen on the ground for suggested the potent ion he has to move Liberia to another level, wherein the issue of abject poverty et al will be things of history.
Just how many politicians- past and present with presidential ambitions have Liberia had such as Benoni A. Urey? To be continued: