Liberia’s main opposition party Congress for Democratic Change or CDC says it is not “a gang party”, claiming that it did not resort to “jungle justice” here, but continued to deal with the National Elections Commission despite alleged “systematic vote rigging” against it.
“We are not a gang party. We are not; we are not a party that contravenes the rule of law or that goes against established governance institutional order. We don’t do that,” CDC National Vice Chairman for Mobilization Mulbah Morlu said Monday on Prime FM 105.5 in Monrovia.
The CDC lost two presidential elections in 2005 and 2011, respectively against President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and her ruling Unity Party. But contrary to Morlu’s assertions, the CDC has had some occasions of elections related –disturbances, which ended in clashes with state security, particularly in 2011 resulting to one death. The party eventually boycotted the runoff with the UP.
The party had threatened to stage “Black Friday” and other street protests if polls did not go its way. In 2005, CDCians also engaged police in a violent street battle, smashing several government-owned vehicles adjacent the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning on Broad Street in Monrovia, which resulted to the detention of then Secretary-General Acarous Gray, now a lawmaker.
Morlu however insisted the CDC still believes in the exercise of the rule of law through the ambience of the court, adding that the party will not take a route that is undemocratic. He recalled that everything went out of order by what transpired in1985 when general elections that were supposed to set the pace for democracy, were compromised and rigged by a military, which produced a presidency that abused the rule of law and exploited the electoral system to keep slain President Doe in power.
In 2005 when the CDC entered the electoral race, Morlu alleged that the NEC announced elections results that were filled with contradictions, claiming that at some point in time, the commission withdrew elections results that were allegedly allocated to the CDC and allegedly reallocating them to the ruling Unity Party.
He further claimed a replay of such incident occurred in 2011, when the NEC allegedly withdrew a number from the CDC and reallocated it to the Unity Part, adding.“Had it not been the tolerance of the CDC, there would have been something else.”
Political skeptics are watching to see whether Morlu’s latest assertion about the CDC could be an indication of a departure from bitter experiences of the recent past.
By Winston W. Parley-Editing by Jonathan Browne