Liberia: Defeated Legislative Candidates in Maryland County Endorse Boakai

In the lead-up to Liberia’s presidential runoff election, the campaign of the opposition Unity Party (UP) candidate, Joseph N. Boakai, has received a significant endorsement from four legislative candidates who were defeated at the polls on October 10, in Maryland. The candidates, including Eric Wlea Giko, William Philip Anderson, Zeway Carr Sr., and Thomas Nimely, expressed their support for Mr. Boakai in a ceremony held at the Pleebo Youth Center in Pleebo, electoral district #2.

Giko and Anderson contested the senatorial seat, while Carr and Nimely aspired for representative seats, but none were successful in their respective quests.

During the ceremony, the candidates highlighted the development initiatives carried out by the Unity Party-led government in Maryland County over the past 12 years, including the establishment of Tubman University, road construction, electricity provision, the development of public services such as health centers, and schools, and the construction of marketplaces. However, they expressed disappointment with the Weah administration, stating that it had not delivered on its promises of change and progress. Instead, it had caused setbacks in the county and country.

“Since the inception of the CDC-led government, we have not received any tangibles but only setbacks in the progress of the county,” the candidates said in their endorsement statement.  “We have not seen the change and hope this President promised, and our county and country continue to retrogress instead of progress.” 

They noted that if President Weah is to be reelected, it would lead the country into a deeper chaos that Liberia will probably never recover from.

“This is why we have come to commit ourselves to the struggle, a struggle that will liberate Liberians from extreme poverty, extrajudicial killings, massive corruption, and bad roads, amongst others,” they said. “And Ambassador Boakai is the best person to lead our country. He is a man of trust and integrity, which he has demonstrated over the years he has served in government.”

The candidates further emphasized their belief that reelecting the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) government would plunge the county and country into deeper chaos, hindering any possibility of recovery. They pledged their support to Ambassador Boakai, highlighting his trustworthiness, integrity, and strong track record in government service.

Critics of the current government also voiced concerns about the lack of tangible development in the southeast region, despite that most senior government officials hail from the southeast. They contrasted this with the Unity Party’s approach, which they said prioritized nationwide development rather than focusing on specific regions.

Despite facing defeat in the previous election, the candidates expressed confidence that their endorsement would boost Ambassador Boakai’s support in Maryland County, leading to a significant increase in votes for the Unity Party in the upcoming runoff election. 

Maryland county senator James Biney, who serves as the campaign manager of the rescue team, welcomed the endorsement on behalf of Ambassador Boakai and the team. Biney, who is also the Senate committee chairman on foreign relations, called on Marylanders to vote for Ambassador Boakai. He criticized the Weah administration for its lack of substantial progress in Maryland and the Southeast.

Biney, a founding member of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change, admitted to being disappointed and baffled by the election results in the first round. However, he expressed hope that Marylanders would change their minds in the runoff election and vote for Ambassador Joseph Nyuma Boakai. He emphasized that the campaign would provide reasons why the CDC should be rejected and the rescue mission should be supported, while respecting each individual’s right to make their own choice in the election.