Editor’s Note: This headline has been changed to reflect the content.
By Lincoln G. Peters
Renowned Liberian human rights lawyer and presidential aspirant Cllr. Tiawan Saye Gongloe has warned the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) – led government against tampering with results of the pending 2023 presidential and legislative elections, claiming that the people are prepared to make them refugees if elections results are tampered with.
Addressing a local intellectual center Sunday, 11 April 2022 on the Hotel Africa Road, Lower Virginia, Cllr. Gongloe accused the government of allegedly carrying out mass employment of CDC partisans at the National Elections Commission (NEC) because the ruling party desperately needs the elections.
“If they have not learned from history, then they are prepared to be refugees because the Liberian people will not accept anything that will not reflect them. Their plan to hijack this election is not going to work because Liberians will not accept any stage-managed election result,” Cllr. Gongloe warned.
The former president of the Liberia National Bar Association (LNBA) cautioned the government to desist from any act that has the propensity to undermine the peace and security of the country during the elections period.
Speaking on the topic “The State of the Governance Process and Fight Against Corruption,” Cllr. Gongloe told a gathering of young and elderly people at the Mohammed Sesay Intellectual Forum in Lower Virginia that there is an alleged stocking of CDCians who are being employed at the NEC ahead of the 2023 presidential and legislative elections.
But he insisted that in spite of this, the government will not tamper with the election result, arguing that the government here knows that the 1985 election result was what led to the conflict in the country.
Gongloe added that it’s something that the CDC government should learn from if it does not know history.
He stated that an election result that is not reflective of the people’s will is completely unacceptable and will be resisted by the masses.
Cllr. Gongloe continued that the CDC government will be compelled to conduct free, fair and transparent elections that will reflect the votes of the Liberian people because they are not ready to re-elect this government.
Cllr. Gongloe said the government has lost the fight against corruption and because of that, the people here no longer have trust and confidence in the governance process of the country.
He claimed that the people are now contemplating replacing the CDC government, but the government is finding a strategy to resist the people’s will by allegedly seeking to twist the election result.
Gongloe noted that because the government here is so corrupt, the Liberian people are not even thinking of giving it a second chance.
He suggested that governance is about the protection of the people and seeking their welfare, but accused the CDC government of failing in executing that mandate.
“Corrupt government of former President Charles Taylor produced so many mysterious deaths. Corrupt government of Mr. Weah has produced so many unexplained and mysterious deaths across the country,” Cllr. Gongloe noted.
“A corrupt government will not have enough resources to seek the welfare of the people because nobody or international partners [are not] willing to trust them,” Cllr. Gongloe claimed.
He said since the founding of Liberia, it’s only under this administration that eight international embassies wrote informing the government that it has stolen their money and demanded a refund.
Gongloe said the CDC government has internationalized stealing, and that under President Weah’s government there is no hope and protection for Liberia because their change for hope has become complete hopelessness for the country.
Following his presentation, Cllr. Gongloe entertained many questions about his vision for the country and how intends to stop corruption in the country.
Responding, he said he will declare his assets, and all those that will be appointed will do the same in order to create a more accountable government than what the Liberian people are seeing.
He also vowed to uphold the rule of law in high esteem and use mechanized farming to make Liberia free from food insecurity. He said his government will produce what the people eat, adding that quality education and healthcare will be available for Liberians under his administration.