Cummings: Liberians ‘Were Mistaken’ to Vote CDC to Power

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ANC political leader, Alexander B. Cummings (center): "Yes, we made a mistake as a people by electing this government, based on their promise for change..."

-Accuses CDC led-government of embarking on a journey of ‘self-serving economics’

Alexander B. Cummings, who was re-elected unopposed as political leader of the Alternative National Congress (ANC) over the weekend, said amid the challenging global economic situation in 2017, Liberians expected new and fresh ideas to improve their livelihoods when they voted in George Manneh Weah of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) as President of Liberia. However, he says that decision was mistaken and their trust misplaced.

Mr. Cummings said it is important for Liberians to think wisely during the 2020 senatorial and 2023 general and presidential elections to right those wrongs that have caused Liberia to take a downward turn.

He accused the CDC-led government, headed by President George M. Weah, of embarking on a journey that he referred to as ‘self-serving economics,’ which seems to be working only for people within the government, not the citizens who voted him for change.

Mr. Cummings made those remarks last Saturday in the commercial city of Ganta, Nimba County, at the ANC’s 3rd national convention.

“The jobs are not forthcoming, businesses are folding up and our new leaders have embarked on a journey of ‘self-serving economics’ that seems to be working only for them,” he said. “The cost of living is becoming unbearable by the day, while a cabal of inexperienced and incompetent people pillage the National Treasury and are enriching themselves to the detriment of the broad mass of the people.”

Following the first round of the 2017 presidential elections, Cummings, as ANC standard bearer, became one of the early influences in the outcome of the subsequent run-off election between the Unity Party standard bearer Joseph Nyumah Boakai and CDC standard bearer George Manneh Weah. Faced with the decision of whether to lead his partisans in favor of either of the two run-off candidates, Cummings told his supporters that each ANC partisan voter was free to choose the candidate of their choice in the run-off.

As standard bearer of his party, Cummings was not alone his decision. Cllr. Charles Walker Brumskine, then standard bearer of the Liberty Party (LP) also set his partisans free to vote for the candidate of their choice in the run-off election. Both standard bearers were party to the Ganta Declaration, an agreement signed in 2017 by standard bearers and political leaders of the then opposition political parties, to hold together to unseat the then ruling Unity Party.

At the 2019 ANC national convention on Saturday, May 4, Cummings said ANC as a party will continue to remain a loyal but critical opposition voice for the vast majority of the people of the country, particularly in the midst of their hopelessness.

“To my fellow citizens, my people… this is no time to wallow in self-pity over our predicament. Yes, we made a mistake as a people by electing this government, based on their promise for change but it is never too late to correct your mistake. 2023 is fast approaching and that will be your opportunity to use the ballot box and CORRECT YOUR MISTAKE!

The ANC political leader said Liberians are no doubt a living testimony of the harsh economic, social, educational and health-related realities that confront us as a people, adding that as the situation stands, there seems absolutely no answer to these burning difficulties.

Mr. Cummings said solving critical problems that border on the lives and survival of a people can never be a child’s play. “That is why,” he said, “the economic woes are far from being over because those at the helm of power simply lack the basic understanding of statecraft to manage the affairs of our country.

“We cannot engage in the tactics of scaring investors away by our actions and inaction and expect the very investors to trust us. Disturbingly, how do we expect to fix the economy when the government’s Economic Management Team is built around a Finance Minister who is obsessed with philosophical platitudes? What has become of the clichés coined and used by President Weah that: “Liberians will no longer be spectators in their own economy”? Those were mere words from him with absolutely no hindsight, least to mention any kind of commitment to act on it.”

Recommendations

Mr. Cummings said the ANC is committed to helping the government create the right and conducive business environment to attract investors’ and to build their confidence.

He recommended that in order for the government to create a conducive environment to attract investors to the country they must take the following decision hard decisions:

  • “Eliminate waste, fraud, and abuse of government spending. We must cut down on expenditures especially on the salaries and benefits of those in the Legislature and redeploy to more productive expenditures that will directly benefit the vast majority of our people”;
  • Urgently review the regulatory and tax environment with a goal to simplify and ease the process of doing business in Liberia;
  • Adequately staff and fund the Liberia Revenue Authority to effectively collect legitimate revenues with a focus on other streams of revenue generations ;
  • Revamp processes at the ports to make it easier to import goods as well as export our products to larger markets around the world;
  • Initiate a careful review of all Concession Agreements aimed at ensuring Liberia gets its fair share from the value of its resources and to create a conducive working environment for our concessionaires; free from threats and other liabilities;
  • Invest in Agriculture, especially in the rural areas and strengthen the capacity of our farmers by providing support to both cash crops and food crops sectors;
  • Uphold the rule of law and sacredness of the independence of our Judiciary, to allow them to dispense justice without fear and favor and void of any intervention or undue influence. This will give investors, as well as our people, explicit confidence in our justice system
  • Curb Corruption and Stop The Stealing! This cannot be emphasized enough. For many years, you have heard corruption called many different names; from Public Enemy #1, to Cancer, but most importantly, you have felt the negative effects of corruption in every sector of our society and ultimately in your lives.

14 COMMENTS

  1. Mr Cummings how you expect investors to stay when since you enter the political arena of Liberia is all about mass demonstrations- election been fraud, 16 billions LD now is save the state. My question to you is: is this your employment and investment strategy you brought from Coca Cola? You should have come during the civil war to ask for international intervention or brought 40 ft containers of relief for malnourished people of that time that you so dare to always put on the streets for protest today. But God is not the God of deceit, spend all you have for protest if you can not help Liberians by providing investment ventures for employment opportunities you wasting your time and resources. Change the game Cummings or come back to America. A candid and wise statement.

  2. Mr. Cummings, your recommendations is not too strong because you talked about cutting slalries of legislatures as a way of cutting expenditures but want the government to hire more people at LRA to collect taxes. You could have recommended some of these things instead of acting like small boy going around bad mouthing the government and scaring potential investors away from Liberia. IS that a business strategy? You should have known better. Just like Mr. Momo said, all you were interested in was demonstration through out the country. As a political leader what you should have done from day one was to help build the economy and help the current government but you took this government for enermy. I am happy you are thinking positive now.

    • Cummings is right, you need more people at the LRA to increase revenue collection. Actually, I think the government should use technology like an e-commerce website to make it easier for people including Diaspora Liberians to pay their property taxes. Many of us own property in the country but you would have to send money to a relative which is not reliable. There is a government database of all registered property and real estate in the country. Each registered property has an assigned record number and the name of the owner of the property, and hopefully an email address. So you get a team of developers to write software that will extract that data into a format that folks can go online and search for their property and pay their taxes online. Most Liberians abroad read FPA, Liberian Observer, and Facebook, so these media could be used to advertise the service. We have to innovate to solve our problems. However, Liberians don’t want to pay taxes because of government corruption. Who would want to pay tax when George Weah and some of his officials were broke but now they’re overnight millionaires? That’s a big problem…

  3. All your recommendations are very important but not when all of them are already in effect. What I expected from you is how we could improve on them.

  4. Alexander Cummings disgraces himself every time he opens his mouth. If he’s not creating 100 000 jobs in 90 days, Cummings gets into the business of insulting the voters of Liberia. The voters of Liberia exercised their rights to vote for Weah on the day of election in 2017. But on the contrary, Cummings is telling the Liberian people that it was a mistake to have voted for Weah. The direct implication of the word “mistake” as Cummings uses it, simply tells us that those Liberians who voted for Weah are bigoted and stupid. Cummings has a responsibility to be civil. Since he spews a venom of sleaze and slime, Cummings has got to learn how not to be venomous or inadequate.

    It’s okay for Cummings to run for the presidency or any position. No one hates him. But contrary to what he thinks and insidiously tells the Liberian people, we know how he ran for the presidency the last time. During his previous run for the presidency, Cummings made all kinds of speehes and promises. None of which he would have kept. By the way, no serious-minded Liberian took him at his word. Of course, if anyone did, it would have been a complete disaster. He didn’t win one of the fifteen counties of Liberia despite his much talked about education and workplace experience. He claims to be a derivative of Maryland county, but a handful of people bothered to vote for the guy in Maryland than anywhere else in Liberia. Given the tremendous odds he faced in 2017, it’s hard to understand how Cummings could tell the Liberian people that a mistake was made by voting for Weah.
    The best that could happen to Cummings today, tomorrow or in years to come is this: his inner circle advisers (if he has any) should help him in the area of writing his speech. If not, a good number of people will be very disappointed in him. Of course if that happens, I won’t regret one inch.

    • F.Hney( which is not your real name), you really believe that Weah is more qualified than Cummings to run Liberia? You are on record for supporting every dumb policy of Weah including changing our constitution to give citizenship to non Negro.

  5. Barnard,
    My name is 100% correct. The issue is that I have never revealed my first name. I don’t know why people are concerned about my name.

    Secondly, I am optimistic that Weah will turn the Liberian economy around. I know how difficult it is for some people in Liberia. I have feelings. But there’s hope that the good days of Liberia are coming.

    With regard to Cummings, he’s got a workplace experience. It’s a plus for him. However, governmental experience is not the same as business world experience. Donald Trump is not doing too well as president. Of course, Trump has worked all his life in the business world. Personally, I feel at ease with Weah. That’s my opinion.

    Changing of Liberia’s constitution:
    If you have the evidence that I support granting Liberian citizenship to non-negroes, supply it. I will tell you this….you are badly mistaken. I am a traditionalist or what is commonly referred to as a conservative. For a very long time, I was a Republican election judge in my state. I have changed though. I am now a bonafide registered Independent. There’s no way on planet earth that I could support the idea of granting Liberian citizenship to non-negroes. Never advocated such a idea.

    Lastly, I am not sure if everything that’s done or proposed by Weah is dumb. However, I cannot dissuade you from you opinion. There may be some proposals of his that are unpopular. But to say that I support every bit of his proposals is false. For example, I did not support his idea of building soccer stadiums all over the country as a top priority. I have an advanced degree in Curriculum and Instruction. What I would have suggested to him is that all schools in Liberia must have the basics. Our young men women have suffered tremendously because of the uncivil war of our country that lasted almost 15 years. Now, the building of stadiums is not in and of itself nefarious. But, in my view, it should not be a top priority. I am human. I can be wrong sometimes.

    I as well as the readers await your evidence of my support for changing the Liberian constitution.

  6. Mr. Alexander Cummings is nothing but a WESTERN SWINDLER. Like most Liberians that have spent most of their time in America doing filling clark jobs, they come down to Liberia, calling themselves EXECUTIVES.
    Cummings was nothing but a clark at a Coca Cola Bottling Plant in Decateur, Georgia.
    Liberians are quick on buying lies from people coming from over seas. Expecially America. There are people in Liberia more qualify than those coming from over seas.
    That’s the reason I m always writing on the establihment of advance educational institutions in Liberia. If a man who seeking the highest office in the country calling other Liberian STUPID, let the Liberian people go ahead and vote for him, then we will know who is really stupid.
    A country where 99% of the citizen want to work in government and make up for lost wealth, it is not strange that anyone can pop up to gain PSUEDO NOTORIETY….at the end, the average Liberian becomes the looser as it is always.

  7. Bah,
    I am not trying to change the topic. You’re absolutely correct. Some Liberians are file clerks, nursing home workers, taxi drivers and so on. Of course, those jobs pay better than if they did the same jobs in Liberia.

    The point to be underscored is that with a limited experience in the US, some Liberians go back home and engross their Resume. So, without doing a good background check on an individual who goes home, sometimes a job is offered. Sadly, that’s when the “cat catches the mouse”. Some people who don’t know a darn thing about management cause more harm than good. Fact!

    I met a Liberian guy who was not competent at all. He went to Liberia and told a boldface lie. He had connections. He got a good job. But he became what we call an “arm chair manager”. The guy or lady who sits behind a desk and gives orders.

    My point with Cummings is simple. He may have worked with Coco-Cola in a managerial capacity. But, the fact that Cummings and a host of Liberians have worked in the world of management does not mean it is a fact of life that Cummings and others can successfully become president. Neither does it mean it can’t happen. But the reality is that Cummings is being vetted. Somehow, his acolytes become enraged and sometimes dangerously offensive when a non-supporter of his makes a critical comment.

    Hypothetically, if Cummings becomes president, the problems of Liberia will not disappear in thin air. Furthermore, his non-supporters will raise heckles. Fact!
    You Reap What You Sow!

    What could be the ideal modus operandi? Few Suggestions……

    Be equanimous. Organize. Don’t scare potential investors away by narrating a tale of falsehoods through third party intermediaries or the media. Don’t destabilize. Don’t insult the Liberian people by suggesting they made a mistake by voting for Weah. For once, blame yourself. You lost the election big time because your message wasn’t persuasive, plain and simple.

    I am not a Cummings’ supporter. Never. I have my own qualifications. Neither am I an avowed hater, God forbid! However, the above is a sound advice that any potential candidate including Cummings could look into. After all, he loves Liberia and I do too.

  8. Mr. Cummings is not able; he is saying the same others have said since 1980. They all have similar Skillsets that can not move Liberia to the worldmarket.

    Yes, the nation resources should be managed correctly of course !

    But at the end of the day, the “Oppositions (4 political parties)” also do NOT actually have the KnowHow, Skills it takes to solve Liberia’s massive problems. People with advance KnowHows/Skills (Engineers, MDs, Technician, Industrial Economists, etc) are the people who should lead in bettering the Liberian economy.
    Bettering the economy means productions in Iron, Rubber, Manufacturing, Native Farming (NOT agriculture ! ), Road Constructions, Export, etc.
    I do not see such resumes in the “Opposition (4 political parties)”?

    Liberia is in the Devil’s Circle (a german Phrase)
    God bless Us.

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