Amid a massive defeat of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) at the Montserrado County senatorial by – election and its political ally Sen. Prince Yormie Johnson’s threat to breakaway, the Executive Mansion here says President George Manneh Weah is worried about everything that will make Liberia to progress.
“Liberia is the biggest worry of the president. He’s worried about education, he’s worried about health, he’s worried about the economy, he’s worried about peace, he’s worried about everything that will make this country to progress,” Deputy Presidential Press Secretary Smith Toby told journalists in Monrovia Tuesday, 6 August.
President Weah personally campaigned vigorously for ruling CDC senatorial candidate PaulittaWie who was massively beaten at the polls by collaborating opposition parties candidate Darious Dillon, while the CDC’s representative candidate Abu Kamara trails behind Telia Urey, another candidate of the opposition collaborating parties.
Mr. Toby indicates that he is not sure President Weah is celebrating the defeat in a county that is considered his strong hold that “has slipped into the hands of another party.”
“It speaks volume, but it’s good that the message came early, than 2020,” he says.In the wake of the ruling party’s defeat, President Weah’s key political ally from vote rich Nimba County Sen. Prince Johnson has threatened to withdraw his support to the president if he continues on the path he is running the government.
But Mr. Toby says Sen. Johnson has given his message to the president through his sermon on a Sunday, saying he made some points and recommendations.“…I’m sure those things, even though not everything he said are the truth or facts, but he’s made some points, he’s made some recommendations,” Toby says.
Toby notes that if the situation about Liberia is spiritual and in Sen. Johnson’s mind, it’s something that needs intervention, he’s speaking in his capacity as a Senator [and leader] of a party that supported the ruling Coalition.
But Toby also believes that no one who gave support to an individual or an institution would want to turn his or her back in the midst of crisis.
He notes that Johnson is one man who has open access to the president and sees the president every time and any time.“The President and Senator Johnson are very good friends. They’ve come a long way in their political sojourn.“They collaborated at all levels, not only in this election. Sen. Johnson has remained a very supportive arm of this administration.”
He believes that those are things that Sen. Johnson can discuss with the president just as they have done before and will continue to do.
Toby argues that Johnson’s points are not a threat to the president or his administration, noting that it is in good faith that the Senator was able to speak his mind.
He believes that Sen. Johnson wants to see the government succeeds, “so the president will listen, he’s listened like he’s always done.”
According to Toby, the president takes Sen. Johnson’s comments in good faith.Addressing a concern if the president is considering reshuffle, Toby says the issue of when, how and what happens to President Weah’s government, the Cabinet and the country is at the president’s will and pleasure.
“If the president is thinking about reshuffle, it is in the president’s thought as to when he will do that. If the president is confident with his team, it is at the disposal of the president,” Toby says.
According to Toby, since the result of the Montserrado County by – election, everyone out there would sit in their closet, anticipating that the president will change people or dismiss people.
“But for people to assume that because there’s a result from the Senatorial by – election … and the people never voted for the CDC and so the message is that people are angry, even the president is aware of the message. He is aware that the way the people voted speaks volume,” Toby reveals.
However, he notes that the president is discussing and holding meetings as it relates to whether or not he will act immediately or give it some sober reflections to reshuffle people.“But I know that there are discussions ongoing and uh, those discussions could lead to many different actions,” he says.By Winston W. Parley