Costa Shows Strength

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Henry Costa with Mo Ali (at his right) led protesters to the Capitol on the morning to January 6, 2020 to begin their protest.

Against all odds, the chairman of the Council of Patriots (COP), Henry Costa, on January 6 proved his strength to breakaway groups, individuals, and the nation at large, despite the disappointment he encountered lately.

The protest was scheduled for December 30, 2019 but, with the intervention of the international community, it was postponed as negotiations ensued for a new date that would be agreeable for both the Government of Liberia and the COP.  Meanwhile, the postponement created the impression that the protest would would lose the momentum that was expected on December 30.

However, as the protesters gradually converged on Capitol Hill on the morning of Monday, January 6, the crowd swelled beyond expectation so that Costa and his COP would have no regret not having official representations from any of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) which had, by now, pretty much declined to declare their support for the protest.

It can be recalled that on June 7, 2019 Costa in conjunction with the CPP and a lot of aggrieved Liberians from various political persuasions, gathered at the Capitol Hill in a protest against the Weah-led government for bad governance. However, after the peaceful protest that attracted a huge crowd, many individuals and groups withdrew; Senator Oscar Cooper of Margibi, Senator Sando Johnson of Bomi County, Rufus Neufville now of the Independent Council of Patriots, the Alternative National Congress (ANC) and the so-called Economic Freedom Fighters of Liberia being the to start pulling out.

On Sunday, January 5, Wilmot Paye, chairman of the former ruling Unity Party, advised its members on the eve of the protest to stay away from the protest.  The Liberty Party, however, issued a statement of support for the protest, though its political leader, Nyonblee Karnga Lawrence, said she was not in the know of such a decision and therefore did not approve it.

In spite of these massive withdrawals, some coming at the 11th hour before the protest, the CoP commanded hundreds of supporters on Capitol Hill, demanding the government to address their petition from June 7, 2019.

A highly elated Costa was very optimistic that the protest would achieved its aim.  Costa told journalists on Monday morning that the CoP and its supporters would not leave the street until the President responds to their petition, which was submitted in June 2019. He said the group is not deterred by the initial low turnout as the Government has instilled fear in citizens.

Disappointment encountered by Henry Costa and the CoP could have brought serious setbacks in the hosting of the just ended protest on January 6.  The intervention of the diplomatic community to halt the protest from being held on the originally scheduled date was enough to instill weakness in many people who thought to participate.

The last encounter with the UP and LP was also enough to draw away people from taking part in the protest.  Moreover, public sentiments had shown that protest does not have a positive impact on Liberia, recalling the 1979 Rice Riot as a classical example.  Earlier, many had predicted that the protest would bring war and therefore the COP should abandon its planned protest.

Despite the odds, Costa, Senator Darius Dillon, Representative Yekeh Kolubah, and others who resolved to bring to fulfillment their goal on January 6, braved the storm and commanded thousands of supporters on Capitol Hill, thereby making Costa especially a popular crowd-puller.

Since becoming a strong critic of the Weah Administration in 2018 after a brief period of amity with the government, Henry Costa has attracted the public so much that on two occasions huge crowds have welcomed him from the United States, hailing him as their “hero”.  In May 2019, supporters and admirers of Costa converged in a huge number at the Roberts International Airport to welcome him from the United States, ahead of the June 7 protest.  He received the same rousing welcome on December 19, 2019 while returning to have the protest that just ended on January 6, in chaos.

Meanwhile, the protest causd businesses, schools, and normal movement of civilians to come to a standstill, thus making the day to appear like a public holiday, albeit with looming threats of violence.  Usually, heavy traffic congestion is experienced every morning during the weekdays, going in and out of central Monrovia, but on January 6, the main thoroughfare, Tubman Boulevard, showed sparse traffic.

The police set a roadblock on 12th street, preventing vehicles and people from moving along the Tubman Boulevard to the Foreign Affairs Ministry that currently hosts the Executive Mansion.  Vehicles and pedestrians were using the Jallah Town route to enter central Monrovia to transact business or perform duties.

Author

  • Hannah N. Geterminah is a 2016 graduate of the Peter Quaqua School of Journalism with diploma and series of certificates in journalism from other institutions. She has lots of knowledge/ experience in human interest, political, Health, women and children stories. Hannah has worked with the Daily Observers Newspaper and the Liberian media for the past years and has broken many stories. Contact reporter; [email protected] WhatsApp;0770214920

6 COMMENTS

  1. Costa showed weakness. Is instructing protesters to go cook, and eat, on the grounds of the seat of power to be followed by the very protesters shitting and pissing all around the Capitol, the Presidency, and the Temple Of Justice, what you reporter and editor see as this foolish boy showing strength? The disorderly conduct of the protesters simply proved that Costa is an irresponsible boy , and in terms of leadership, extremely weak.

  2. Strength? I heard there were 3000 and that includes curious onlookers. Out of Monrovia population of almost a million ,3000 is real strength!

    Making fire was not a good idea and sanitation overnight would have been a huge challenge.

  3. Daily Observer,
    “Costa Shows Strength” WHERE,????
    Costa and his COP predicted a turnout of 100,000 protesters, who were prepared to remained in the streets for several days, come what may. But at the first sound of water spray, Costa, the officials of COP and their handful of protesters VANISHED.
    SAM TV carried the protest LIVE. The pressmen and security personnels were more than the protesters.
    When asked about presentation, Costa said he and his COP had nothing to present to the Government of Liberia. They were simply there until The President can fulfill their DEMANDS.
    When asked about the 100,000 turnout, Dillon said “as many as may come”.
    After many months of planning and raising money, the support for the protest was very sorrowful. The protest died a NATURAL DEATH.
    Costa and his COP were only trying to justify the money that they collected and consumed. A big SHAME on them.

    His Excellency President Dr George Menneh Weah and the CDC Government SHOW STRENGTH by allowing a group of lawless individuals to illegally Carry on a protest in the City of Monrovia.

  4. A few days ago, the founder of ICoP, Rufus Nuefville, stated that a $200,000-dollar bribe was offered to “some” members of the CoP opposition. Nuefville also stated that he’s got some spooks within the CoP opposition who supply him with reliable insider information. Nuefville was not taken seriously because it couldn’t be believed that the CoP is a sort of a “good for nothing organization” that embellishes its record. Well, something is worth mentioning. Nuefville’s disclosure of corruption within the ranks of the CoP is quickly becoming a reality.

    Let’s take a listen:
    CoP……. We matched. We could not be stopped by the GoL or the international community.

    GoL……. We agreed for you to march. Please do not think that we kow-towed to your demand. We agreed for you to protest because we are not tyrants, but rather democratic.

    CoP……. We demand Weah’s removal from office. We feel that the Weah government is out of step with the average Liberian citizen.

    GoL…… It’s hard to tell who the main Representative of your organization is. There’s Costa, the shock jock who is internally accused as being corrupt. And then you’ve got Cummings, Boakai, the Ureys, Kolubah, etc. Who is your main Representative?

    CoP……. But why? Why y’all asking that kinda question for?

    GoL……. Don’t speak broken English. We have a right to ask. When your protesters came out to march, Commings, Boakai, and others disappeared in thin air. The poor people you claim to represent encamped on the presidential compound with their cookpots and mattresses. But you didn’t provide for toiletries, neither did you bother to give the poor people some blankets or small tents just in case it rained.

    CoP……. Shut your mouth, you so called Weah people. We want nothing else but Weah’s ouster! The economy is bad. Step down. Woo, we say step down! Our papa Alexander Cummings will fix the economy by creating 100,000 jobs within three months of his presidency.

    GoL……. You said that we should shut our mouths? CoP, please stop being rude! Don’t spew garage at us. We have the capability to respond in kind. Alexander Cummings will be unable to create 100,000 jobs without training the new employees. By the way, where is he going to get money from?

    CoP…….. What can y’all do? Y’all think the soldiers will fight? The soldiers can’t get their monthly checks. We say “Weah step down”.

    GoL….. This is not about a fight. We are determined not to spill blood. We will maintain law and order the best way we know how. Furthermore, approximately 3,500 protesters came out yesterday. Can 3,500 protesters represent a country of almost 5 million citizens?

    CoP…… Again, we say y’all shut up. We’ve got our supporters all over the republic of Liberia.

    GoL….. If you guys don’t know how to represent the Liberian people, please do not waste our time. Did you inform your supporters all over the country yesterday? Why weren’t protest rallies held throughout the country. You guys seem to be out of touch.

    CoP…… We are the main representatives of the oppressed. Every body, let’s say it together…Step down, step down, step down. We say step down!

    GoL…. A dialogue is needed. We cannot conduct business like this. There’s confusion in your camp!

    CoP…….. Oh we’ve got the last word.
    ” Liberians, come on our side. Liberians, we will always speak for you.

  5. This is the way CDCians always reply in defending their god George Manneh Weah. Costa will be hailed for exposing corruption in your government. Despite spending thousand of taxpayers money on propaganda including paying comedians to intimidate citizens and shotting down the internet became futile.

    The best thing you can do is to advice your coach(president Weah) to substitute the players who are not being fruitful on the field or else we will sack him( vote him out) at the end of his tenure.

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