The love for power and the love for democracy are two separate worlds of their own. When politicians speak in the name of democracy, they must be dissected whether they are seeking naked power or they seek to promote democratic values. There is a fine line between democracy and power. From the onset of the formation of political parties, organizers promised Liberians to up-hold democratic principles. They must have used the word a zillion times and won the admiration of Liberians who embraced them and crowned them champions of democracy.
With hope and passion, they clinked to their political leaders in anticipation of the bright future they behold for Liberia. However, a testing period is always there to determine whether political leaders would remain true to their creed. In the case of Liberia, two major events have presented themselves as test cases for political parties and their leaders. These national events were the referendum and the first round of the presidential and general elections.
It is recorded that political parties and citizens were given the democratic choices to amend certain provisions of the constitution. Their reactions, though an expression of constitutional prerogatives, did appear short of some democratic expectations. Admirably, opposition parties valued the democratic exercise of the ballot box and instructed their partisans to vote no. Unfortunately, Liberia’s leading opposition party, the CDC adopted an extra-democratic position to boycott the polls instead of utilizing the strength of democracy which lays within the power of the people to say yes or no.
The extra procedure adopted by the CDC was criticized by passionate democrats who saw their action as the brutalization of democracy and depriving their partisans of participating into an historic event for the first time. That act was seen as a clear sign of what would obtain in the future against democracy and against those who desire to place Liberia on the map as Africa’s first true democratic nation.
One of the cardinal pillars of civil conflicts is the inability of political leaders to respect due processes, bow to the will of the people, adjust to changing circumstances, and to accept democratic expressions and decisions. Political leaders who remain hostile to the happiness of the people are soon caught pants down in the darkest tunnels.
Many Liberians spoken to can’t comprehend the hostility of the CDC against a process continued to be rated as free, fair, and transparent by poll watchers, representatives of political parties, and observers from over eight hundred countries and organizations of repute. Interestingly, the National Elections Commission seems to have wonderfully performed in the consideration of the CDC in Legislative elections won by them but badly and fraudulently performed in areas not won by them. This is unfair, egotistic, self-centered, and undemocratic. As of this writing, none of CDC’S representatives and senators elect has rejected their seats which in the view of political analysts represent the credibility of the Elections Commission.
Unfortunately, the current posture of the CDC and its collaborators who ranked below 0.2% against the electoral process continues to baffle all peaceful and democratic citizens. To realize that a George Weah and a Winston Tubman both of whom have acclaimed records as Liberian Ambassadors in various categories and represented as peace loving and democratic minded Liberians are leaders of the CDC are condoning conditions and positions that threaten the stability, peace, and Liberia’s democratic environment have caused Liberians and the international community to wonder aloud.
According to Representative Elect Acarous Gray who is also Secretary General of the CDC, there will be boycott of the runoff presidential elections and if the National Elections Commission proclaimed the Unity Party as winners, CDC will consider its government illegitimate and if it will cause them sweat and blood, they will resist the government. Mr Gray and his CDC calls for a change of the entire commission for what he describes as in-transparencies, fraudulence, and supporters of the Unity Party. But Mr. Gray considers himself Representative elect in an election conducted by the same commission.
What the CDC is transmitting to the world is that any commission that does not proclaim Winston Tubman and George Weah as President and Vice President, that commission is accused of rigging and being a supporter of President Johnson. Let’s look at the CDC’S logic or reasoning. First and foremost, they rule out procedures lay down and accepted by all parties prior to the elections for the adjudication of complaints. Secondly, they fervently believe in the art of boycott. Thirdly, they want a situation that demands the President to sent nominations to the senate for confirmation at the 11th hour. Fourthly, they intend to entrap the process into an impasse that might drag past the electoral timeline to make renew calls for an interim arrangement which they concluded at a local restaurant.
The plan as has been leaked will work out modalities in which current legislators and those elected would take their seats while an interim executive council is formed with cabinet arrangements among political parties and a chairman that will conduct the affairs of the nation and hold a presidential election in which there would be no incumbent. With these arrangements in mind, the concentration of the CDC is to uphold the legislative elections and devise mechanisms to make the nation ungovernable to achieve its purpose. This calculated plan according to impeccable sources is part of the Allan White’s strategy to ensure that the CDC takes state power and for this purpose, they considered the Security Protocol or code of conduct of political parties crafted by the National Police a death trap and thus refused to sign.
It is amazing that those who claim democratic credentials and lovers o f peace in Liberia have not come out from the fold of the CDC to safeguard Liberia’s peace and democracy being threatened by the leadership of the CDC. Who is in there that has passion for democracy? Where is Winston and where is George? Are they being open to the world that Liberia’s peace and democracy mean nothing to them but naked power? Where is Mulbah Morlu, the great advocator of War Crimes Court? Is he promoting conditions that would open Liberians to physical abuse and destructions? Where is Jerome Verdier, the TRC former Boss who combed the world for support to ensure that the culture of impunity comes to an end? Is he also silent when his party threats against national unity, reconciliation, and democracy are sending the shivers in the spines of citizens? Liberians seek to know.
The trend of the CDC is appalling to Rufus Neufville who believes that the leadership is not providing democratic guidance to CDCIANS. He believes that his Party is holding Liberians hostage. This is unacceptable to him. What the attitude of CDC defines according to a group of breakaways is love for power and not love for democracy. They are of the opinion that CDC no longer represents peace, and democracy which they cherished so much. According to them, they are being used in a deadly bargaining politics that could lead Liberia into another deadly civil war.
An international expert on the UN who anonymously spoke to this columnist, says Liberians are endangering their own sovereignty. According to him, Liberians have this time to prove that they are capable of governing themselves or risk UN Trusteeship. This is a serious matter and those within the fold of the CDC must realize that beyond CDC, they are Liberians and Liberia must continue to exist irrespective of desired ambitions and powers.