-Rep. Cole clarifies leaked audio
A member of the leadership of the House of Representatives, Bong County District #3 Representative, Josiah Marvin Cole, has denied any involvement in an alleged conspiracy to overthrow President George Weah.
Cole also denied Vice President Jewel Howard-Taylor’s involvement and said, “I’ll do nothing to overthrow the President.”
He is the House co-chairman on Rules, Order and Administration. On Sunday, February 17 at the headquarters of the National Patriotic Party (NPP) in Congo Town, Rep. Cole termed the accusation as “grave that has the potential to tarnish his reputation and pose an imminent threat to my life as well as my family and associates.”
Rep. Cole replaced former Representative George Sylvester Mulbah in the 2017 presidential and legislative elections.
His clarification was prompted when his name was mentioned in a leaked audio by the suspended Bong County Superintendent Esther Walker, quoting two other senior officials of the Weah Administration that he (Rep. Cole) and Vice President Jewel Howard-Taylor want to overthrow President Weah, and that the President was likely to dismiss a few traditional leaders over the row.
Madam Walker is heard on an audio recording, explaining to her aide that she had attended a party organized by First Lady Clar Weah shortly after President Weah delivered his second Annual Message (State of the Nation Address). According to her, the party was held at the President’s Jamaica Resort, along the Robertsfield Highway, where at least three of President Weah’s trusted lieutenants – Finance and Development Planning Minister Samuel Tweah, Minister of State Nathaniel McGill and Monrovia City Mayor Jefferson Koijee were reportedly seated.
She narrated that the trio revealed to her that Rep. Cole and the Vice President are attempting to overthrow the President and, for that, Cole will never see the President’s face again, only through television and/or through the gathering of lawmakers.
In reaction to the leaked audio, Cole, who is an executive of the former ruling National Patriotic Party (NPP) said, “let me make it emphatically clear that these accusations are false, malicious, lack any iota of truth; has the potential to turn away investors from our national environment and send a very bad signal of insecurity and mistrust in this government. Considering these and other negative implications, I believe it is my duty to make clarity on this matter to our people.
“Let me say without fear that I harbor no desire or intention whatsoever, nor have l been a part with anyone or any person; neither did I have any discussion of such matter, nor was l interested negatively, which will bring a stumbling block to this government or bring disunity and animosity among officials of government or act in any way to increase the sufferings of our people.”
Rep. Cole described the audio or rumor of him and Vice President wanting to overthrow the President as diabolical lies, a trend of lies to bring disrepute to the country which, he said must stop.
He boasted of an 11-year working relationship with Vice President Taylor, and thus, he referred to her as her “family and big sister.”
“I pledge my unflinching support to President Weah, the government and to the state that I will do nothing, to join any plot now or in the future to remove him,” he said.
Meanwhile, due to the leak audio, Chief Moses Suakollie, the Dakpanah, and Arthur Kulah, native superintendent in Bong County (head of chiefs in Bong County) lost their jobs, after a high-level traditional meeting headed by Assistant Minister of Culture at the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Joseph B. Jangar, and Chief Zanzar Karwor, chair of the chiefs and elders of the National Traditional Council of Liberia in the county was held.
Superintendent Esther Walker was also suspended indefinitely after she was heard on the audio recording explaining that the President was likely to dismiss a few traditional leaders over the row. Acting in her stead according to a press release from the Ministry of Internal Affairs, is Bong County’s Assistant Superintendent for Development, Anthony Sheriff.