In the corridor of the Capitol Building on Tuesday morning, July 7, 2015, officers of the elite presidential guard – the Executive Protection Service or EPS, clashed with Montserrado County Senator George Weah.
It all began when Liberty Party’s Cllr. Charles Walker Brumskine had gone to the Capitol to hold discussions with the Senator Weah. Weah, along with personal guards – was apparently on his way to welcome Cllr. Brumskine on the grounds floor of the Capitol Building, while at the same time, Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai was on his way to his office, when the assigned EPS officers halted him to provide free and easy passage for the Vice President.
But Weah, a one-time peace and reconciliation ambassador of Liberia, in an angry and arrogant tone and posture harshly remarked: “do you know who you are talking to? I’m senator and political leader of the biggest political party here; so I’ll not stand. We’re all equal before the rules of the senate.” Weah subsequently continued his journey with no respect and courtesy to the Vice President of Liberia and President of the Liberian Senate.
The interaction between the assigned EPS officers and Senator Weah almost created uproar, resulting to a serious debate among senate staff, senators and bystanders. While some claimed that Weah was right for not allowing Vice President Boakai free passage, others said it was a matter of protocol, as well as the fact that the Vice President of Liberia is the head of the Liberian Senate and as such, it was compelling Weah accorded him due courtesy and respect as required by the rules of the senate.
Whenever Vice President Boakai enters the Chambers of the Liberian Senate to preside, all within the chambers, including Senator George Weah himself, are required to rise while he walks in to his seat.
Meanwhile, speaking to the press about his closed door visit to Weah, Cllr. Brumskine said the engagement was intended to build ties with other opposition leaders for a winnable ticket in the 2017 Presidential and Legislative Elections.
According to the Liberty Party leader, who had contested in two presidential elections and failed, there’s need for the opposition block to work together closely toward a better ticket in 2017.
Brumskine, who after his engagement with Weah, toured offices of senators, including those, who were elected on the Liberty Party’s tickets, said he has been talking to almost all political parties and their respective officials, including Senator Prince Johnson, indicating that the future of the country rested with the opposition block.
He said while it was true that political negotiations – some times, don’t go the way expected, the best option is to keep trying. “You know the worse thing about life is to stop trying; so the best thing is to keep on trying and the best will come,” Brumskine said, further noting: “we have been talking with political leaders about collaboration. Everyone should understand that there is a need to come together.”
Prior to the 2011 Presidential Elections, merger talks between George Weah of the Congress for Democratic Change and Cllr. Brumskine of the Liberty Party failed in Ghana over the issue of leadership, as Weah reportedly rejected any idea of a Brumskine leadership of the ticket for 2011, other than him.
According to the reported agreement then, both parties would have united in a merger against their common political ‘enemy’, incumbent President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, but it didn’t work. Just a few days after the reported agreement was made public, it went crushing gradually.
When the CDC’s United States branch convened a strategic conference and inauguration of its United States chapter leadership, the CDC-Liberty Party Merger Agreement was highlighted, with partisans expressing disdain over the agreement between the two parties without consultations, inputs, and consensus of the party’s membership and its leadership. By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor – Editing by George Barpeen