The former governing Unity Party seems to have completely lost confidence in its rather conservatively tough-talking Chairman, Wilmot Paye, leading to his indefinite suspension by the UP National Executive Committee.
But when did the former ruling party realize it has been its own enemy all along by the actions and public utterances of the man it elected on white ballot to run its day to day affairs?
The moment Paye took the helm of power in the UP rising to the post of Secretary General and subsequently, National Chairman, he adapted a posture of antagonism against its formidable ex-standard bearer Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who navigated the party thru two six-year consecutive terms of national governance of the country.
His combative style of leadership, especially within the party came to public glare during the UP’s bid for third term in the 2017 Presidential and Representative elections when he flatly refused to work with fellow National Executive Committee members, including then National Secretary General Lenn Eugene Nagbe, his immediate successor thus, splitting the party in the middle with divided allegiance.
From all indications, it appeared that Paye totally had a separate agenda that seemed to have pre-occupied his mind other than leading the party to elections as a cohesive force like his predecessors – Dr. Charles Greene, and subsequently Cllr. Varney Sherman did. Instead, he was calling all the shots without any consultations; neither was he willing to entertain contrary views.
Perhaps what seemed to have been the last straw that broke the camel’s back in the middle of the campaign for the 2017 elections was the infamous press statement the suspended chairman read, raining public insults and wide charges against then President Sirleaf. It then became a full grown conclusion that the ruling party had self-destructed and wasn’t getting a third term as desired by its 73 years old ex- standard bearer, former Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai.
According to report, the UP National Executive Committee suspended the cantankerous Chairman over the weekend on allegations of misapplying US$50,000 donated to his kinsmen in Nimba by former presidential candidate Joseph Nyumah Boakai during the 2017campaign.
Mr. Boakai reportedly provided the amount for Paye to have delivered same to Nimbaians on the last day of campaign in fulfillment of earlier promise he (the former presidential candidate) made to electorate in the county.
Though he is to face formal investigation, a charge of misappropriation of campaign fund by a ruling party chairman is a serious betrayal of the party’s agenda, to say the least, especially in a major national election!
This is why we ask, how could have the once powerful UP sat there and allowed one overly ambitious individual with a double-standard mind to have his will all these years without bringing him to check? By the catalog of his excesses, it goes without any argument that Paye succeeded in bringing the UP to its knees.