-“I came because of the importance of Weah Step Down protest,” Henry Costa tells supporters
By Alvin Worzi and William Q. Harmon
The Council of Patriots’ (CoP) lead campaigner of the nationwide protest, popularly known as the “Weah Step Down Campaign,” Henry P. Costa has arrived in the country ahead of the planned December 30 protest.
Thousands of Liberians, believed to be followers of Mr. Costa and supporters of the planned December 30 protest, early Thursday morning gathered at the Roberts International Airport (RIA) in Margibi County to welcome Mr. Costa.
However, prior to the arrival of Mr. Costa, a contingent of armed officers of the Liberia National Police (LNP) were seen at the airport and juxtaposed along the highway leading from the airport to Monrovia.
The leadership of CoP is calling for President George M. Weah to step down as the country experiences extreme economic hardship since he ascended to power for nearly two years. The group is also demanding good governance from the ex-footballer who, they say, has no regard for the rule of law, especially the Constitution.
Some of the supporters told the Daily Observer that they left their homes as early as Wednesday and slept at the airport, awaiting Henry Costa with eager anticipation.
Amid rumors that the famous talk show host Mr. Costa would be arrested upon arrival at the RIA today Thursday, December 19, Costa emerged from the airport terminal unhindered, into the embrace of his supporters.
The crowd greeted him with chantings and slogans, singing: “George Weah go, George Weah go, George Weah go…”
Six big yellow buses were chartered to transport the CoP’s supporters to and from the airport, while some carried their own vehicles.
“Weah not able to govern this country. Weah’s nightmare is here now. December 30 is successful already with the arrival of Mr. Costa. Weah worries with the presence of Henry Costa,” supporters of the December 30 protest sang at the arrival of Henry Costa.
According to some of the supporters, the decision to call on President Weah to step down is intended to seek the interest of the Liberian people and not him (Weah). Mr. Mo Ali, Unity Party’s director for Press and Propaganda, was also seen welcoming Mr. Costa with a hug.
Mr. Costa’s convoy, which has departed the RIA already, is expected to stop at the VAMOMA Junction, around the 24th street and begin with a marching band, headed for for central Monrovia. Costa is expected to will renew calls for the “Weah Step Down Campaign” at an intellectual center called Center for the Exchange of Intellectual Opinion (CEIO), which is located on Carey Street in central Monrovia.
Mr. Costa told supporters upon arrival that he was delighted to be back in Liberia, and there should be no tension about his arrival.
“I’m honored by the turnout today by my supporters and I’m prepared to work in their interest and the general interest of all Liberians. I’m also happy for the love and support,” Mr. Cotsa said.
Costa told supporters that the purpose of his return to Liberia is because of the importance of the December 30 “Weah Step Down Campaign” protest which, he said, “is supported by thousands of Liberians.”
He added that “the Justice Minister Frank Musa Dean does not know the law because the law says you have freedom of expression and freedom of assembly according to Articles 17 and 15 and we are combining the both and utilizing them on December 30.”