Nuquay Threatens ‘Free Speech’

Boakai's Nuquay (right): "They will pay the price for their rudeness... no matter [if] heaven opens,”

One of the hallmarks of the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf administration over her two terms as President of Liberia will no doubt be her position on free speech. Liberians seem to be enjoying the fruits of democracy and have dared not to return to the past when they were terrorized, brutalized and most often jailed for having their say in the manner in which their country was governed—albeit in ways that did not please the ruling establishment. However, and on an unfortunate note, Liberians could come face to face their brutal past if the ruling Unity Party is given a third shot at the Liberian presidency (wins a third term) in October, information surfacing has indicated.

In a newly published recording, UP’s newly nominated Vice Standard Bearer (VSB) and House Speaker James Emmanuel Nuquay, made threatening remarks against opposition politicians and his critics for their critical stance against the way the country is being governed.

“People are coming and they want our job, but it is not our business to give them job—we will never ever do that. It is our birthright,” he stated.

“They come with a lot of rudeness, but there is one thing that we have said, which I want to reiterate, is that let them bear in mind that whether it takes one, two or three years they will pay the price for their rudeness. I said this and I will say it consistently because I will do it no matter heaven opens,” Nuquay is heard saying in the recording of the nation’s popular radio talk show, “The Henry Costa Show.” The revelation was made on Wednesday by the lead presenter of the early morning show, Henry Costa.

Speaker Nuquay noted that now is the time for these job seekers to exhibit their rudeness, “but after October 11 going forward, will be my time.” October 11 would be the day right after the election. “This will be my time.”

However, opposition leaders, media practitioners, and others have been very critical of the government, especially the National Legislature, which is the first branch of government, accusing it of not working in the interest of the Liberian people. VP Boakai and Nuquay are two of the three most senior political leaders in the Legislature.

Members of the Legislature, especially the Lower House, which Nuquay now controls, continues to be lambasted for what many see as being ingrained in a culture of immaturity and not being serious.

However, since the electioneering process began, many opposition politicians have spoken critically of the UP government—accusing it of corruption, nepotism, and keeping the masses in perpetual poverty and deprivation. There have been other standoffs between the ruling party and other opposition parties.

A few months ago, the political leader of the opposition Liberty Party, Charles Walker Brumskine, referred to a statement made by the standard bearer of the UP as “Nonsense”- a statement that generated a lot of reactions especially from partisans of UP and other opposition leaders, who felt that it was an insult to the elderly VP.

Cllr. Brumskine’s statement was in reference to an earlier statement attributed to the VP that President Sirleaf was clandestinely giving support to the LP leader.

“I have heard this for a while from other presidential candidates and their surrogates and even surrogates of the Vice President, but because such nonsense has been reiterated by a presidential candidate, who is the sitting Vice President of the country, I now feel constrained to respond,” Charles Brumskine had said. “It is totally false, and there is not an iota of truth to the insinuation of the Vice President.”

Henry Costa, the lead host of the show, indicated that the threat posed by the new UP vice standard bearer reflects upon every critic of this administration who has consistently accused them of corruption, nepotism and other acts of bad governance.

“This guy is talking to all of us who have the audacity to question the many wrongs of this ruling establishment as it relates to the manner in which our country is governed. He called it rudeness, when he steals millions of dollars in our budget and we tell him that and also criticize him,” Costa said.

Costa also alleged that there is a plan in the camp of the ruling party to make Nuquay president after VP Boakai had served his initial term. In this regard, Nuquay, who would be the new VP at that time, could earn two terms at the presidency.

“If you want the dark days to return you should vote the Boakai-Nuquay team. The corruption, bad governance and secret killings that Harry Greaves and others fell prey to will become the order of the day. No one will say anything here,” he said.

“Our job here is to inform our people so that they make the right decisions and do not give power to monsters who will turn against them (the masses) at the end of the day,” Costa said.

Is Nuquay a Wrong Pick?

The latest revelation, coupled with many integrity issues and others, bring to the fore a barrage of questions as to whether Nuquay is a good pick by Vice President Boakai. The first point of contention is that Nuquay is the founder of the People’s Unification Party (PUP) and not a member of the UP. No merger or political collaboration was announced between both parties, so the decision to choose him has brought a lot of disenchantment within the UP camp.

The selection of Speaker Nuquay also brings into question the level of preparation that the ruling party made for this imminent transition—raising the question whether there is no one qualified within the party to be named a running mate, thereby finally settling on someone who earlier abandoned the UP and didn’t return.

However, prior to this latest pronouncement, no merger or political collaboration was made public between the UP and the PUP. Many would, however, feel that the decision of the VP to favor an outsider against many experienced, distinguished and qualified members of the ruling party is a disservice to these people who have committed their sweet to the causes of the party.

Some pundits are indicating that Speaker Nuquay would never have been the speaker in a better functioning legislature in a country where credibility, trust, experience and innovation count. From all indications, his selection as the speaker is largely based on chance.

“Nuquay lacks the requisite skills and experience to serve the Liberian people as a potential president should the president becomes unable to serve,” said a senior UP partisan who asked not to be named.

This partisan also said Nuquay has no international experience and is not known outside of Liberia, especially Margibi County. “Also, he is leading an institution that is not only despised by the Liberian people but equally condemned by all meaningful stakeholders with interest in Liberia,” he said.


  1. You have complete idiots who go to LU, buy grades and come out with yamayama LLB’s and now believing themselves educated when they have not accomplished a single thing in their lives. Idiots like Nuquay will be pushing wheelbarrow in Redlight if extreme poverty had not clouded the minds of our ppl. What sane person will vote for a maggot like Nuquay? Better hope you stole enough

    • What is this, Quiwonkpa? What’s the source of your bitterness, brother? You are taking this debate out of context. Do you know Hon. Nuquy? Are you rendering justice, based on what you heard on the radio? Please tune down your emotion, and begin to handle things more objectively.

    • Liberia is not his birthright no is it for the Kpelle people. This man is a relic with dangerous thinking.Wow, this man is not even vice president and he has the makings of a dictator. What does he mean it is his birthright. This is a provincial small minded and tribalistic man who if he becomes vice president will fill the government with his people. My God, have we learned nothing from the war? This shows that Boakai was not thinking when he selected this man. He had the chance to move the country forward by choosing an educated, young, intelligent and visionary thinker and he chose a truly horrible person.

  2. This is just the beginning, more to come as the news people would say. You just coming to gov’t and telling 3.5 million people our jobs. Liberia is country that belong to millions of people. You are nothing mr. whatever you called yourself with the people of Liberia. These same people will have to push you in October.

  3. What was the context in which Speaker Nuquay allegedly spoke? Without providing that, no one will be able to fairly judge the Speaker. It should also be mentioned that Henry Coasts is not a journalist. He is a political hustler who shows no compunction in insulting people he perceives as his enemies, having been accused on numerous occasions for rudeness.

    The Observer should have also told its readers that Henry Coasta is on the payroll of Benoni Urey and a representative candidate on Urey’s ALP.

    Also, it is significant to note that the Observer has been a steadfast supporter of Dr. Mills Jones; and is likely to switch over to Urey if the CoC inevitably disqualifies Jones.

    Given without providing the context, the words attributed Speaker Nuquay have been maliciously taken out of context.

    Meanwhile, let us learn to be civil. Insulting someone who has been merely accused is wrong.

    From all indications, the Congo-dominated Political Opposition and the CDC have panicked, surprised by the popularity of the Boakai-Nuquay Ticket.

    • My brother, no matter what they say or do, we have decided to do what is right for Liberia, and that is exactly what we are going to do. I am going to cast my ballot for The Boakai-Nuquy ticket, so not even Henry Costa or any of his co-detractors will ever change my mind.

  4. Very stupid in making statement like this .
    you know when country man get opportunity those are some of
    the problems Liberian face with.He crossed the line…… good for nothing.
    The coming to get our jobs…..Stupid statement.

    • Emmanuel, Henry Coastal show has no credibility and besides that, the authored of this article is a misguided journalist who didn’t quote the words Nuquah purportedly uttered. He didn’t get the views of Nuquah, but published a story he heard from a radio station that’s completely not balance.

    • This is why I was concern when this man name pop up as Boakai’s runningmate, because not much is known about this man. hearing stuff like this, put more fear in people like me.

  5. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s position free speech and press freedom IS as oppressive, supressive, and despotic, as any despot! The killings of whitleblowers, critics, opponents, the Patrics’ Keita’s, Philibert Browne’s Rodney Sieh’s, illegal prosecutions and imprisonments, including those of the closure of the Chronicle Newspaper, and the dragging off air ofCosta by the president’s son are proof that Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s pisition on free speech and press freedom is despotic.

    • This is truly an example of acute mental blindness…… Who are you? Where do you reside? In outer space? You must be an “Unidentified Flying Object”. I hope there is not another Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, who lives in your imagination…. You are acutely delusional. Please accept my sincere sympathy….

  6. Circumstances or not that prompted the comments, Mr. Nuquay must bear in mind Liberia is not any one single person property to start making such threatening remarks. Can’t imagine you haven’t even sat in the VP seat and you start hooting like this???? How dare us sound-minded Liberians to go to the pools and vote a dictator into office.

    Was expecting a whole lot from JNB in terms of who to choose as running mate. Now that he has chosen his running mate, the ballot will speak for the Liberian people.

    • The result will always be in our favor, dude. Victory is certain for The Boakai-Nuquy Ticket. Bravo JNB. We will meet on Inauguration day, while our opponents will be licking their wounds in their little corners.

  7. Is it true that Nigerian troops will soon be in Liberia to make sure CDC does not riot after the election results are announced? The choice of Charles Taylor’s ex-wife really hurt the ticket. Liberians are more informed nowadays. George Weah should have stayed away from Jewel Taylor. Liberians will never forget Charles Taylor. Bad choice for CDC.

  8. To begin with, I am an ardent supporter of The Boikai-Nuquy Ticket. What I don’t comprehend here is, why are our opponents so bothered about our choice? We are the ones who have Hon. Nuquy as our Vice Presidential candidate at the moment, and it should be our responsibility to determine whether Amb. Boikai has made a production decision or not. The opposition community is creating the impression that they are stripped of useful ideas to present to the voters, so they are belaboring themselves with our problems. These bunches of useless “flunkies” will do all they can to unconsciously to patronize our continuity. As for us, the supports of The Boikai-Nuquy ticket, we resolved to do what did to you in 2005, and 2011, but this time, we will raise our higher. A first round win, is what we are anticipating. Have a nice day.

    • You are truly delusional. Everyone should be worried with this tribalistic talk. Remember Rwanda? You are beating the drum of war to write nonsense like “As for us, the supports of The Boikai-Nuquy ticket, we resolved to do what did to you in 2005, and 2011, but this time, we will raise our higher.” Boakai is tired and his VP will run the country. Liberia will be sent back 500 years. The most corrupt executive choosing the most corrupt legislative. Liberia is finished.

  9. Someone who is not a member of the governing Unity Party to be Picked by the VP Bokai as running mate is the true reflection of his past and the enhancement of his future. Liberia is about to experience the continue bad governance if this failed old man Bokai is given the node in October 10, Elections.

        • Hawa,
          one man can not destroy the country, You remember these people, Doe, Taylor and his NPFL., you have level headed people in the Unity Party and Liberians that could get rid of the VP if he is not acting in the interest of the Country. The world is changing every day, and one person can not take us backward.

    • Hi,Clarke, trust me, Liberia has change, we will not go back, He-Nuquay could be the VP, but he is only one person, and he knows that,he could be his own down fall.

  10. I am not a politician but what concern me is why Liberian at home feel that public office is their personal properties. When Ebola was killing them they cry on to us and some of us help with all that we have but when it come to public office they want to call us names . Are we not Liberian ?

    • Grewon,

      You are so right. Long ago people were proud when a Liberian came from abroad with a degree, but now and days, we are consider to be non-Liberia because we were able to leave the country and get a degree, Even thou you send the Money gram to.

  11. NUQUAY is also a political hustler. I double dear VP.Boakai and his crook NUQUAY yo call for an AUDIT of the lower and upper house of parliament they head


  13. Ha, ha, looka Boakai sitting next to Nuquay. Boakai looks sleepy and tired. This man will let this Kpelle warmonger run the country. And you all know what that means. Vote right, vote them out. Boakai chose the wrong man.

  14. Since when has a good education been a bad thing? Since the time Liberians pay for their degrees and grades and hate those who actually work for it.

  15. Daily Observer has been proven Anti-UP and cunningly Pro-Opposition. I have read between the line in their reporting and observed biases and sensational reporting. Daily Observer is Pro Henry Costa; additionally, their reporting is usually sensational with untrue facts or assumptions just to impress their ‘readers.’ This is bringing shame on credible journalism. The Daily Observer Reporters should stand-up to the ethics of truth telling and standards.

  16. Have you seen Boakai’s home road? What has he done for all his years in politics? We need a new broom, someone who has made a name for themself. We need a business minded person like Cummings not a chronic politicians who cannot support himself out of politics. We need experience and honesty. Sweep the Capitol clean.

  17. If the story is true – and the quotes not taken out of context – we advise all politicians to remember that tactfulness wedded to humility is their biggest job requirement. More especially in a country where unresponsive, irresponsible, unethical, and unaccountable governance are the drivers of widening polarization, and hopelessness of the vast majority of Voters.

    And lest we forget, free speech is the shoulder on which democracy stands, therefore, the Liberian people wouldn’t allow their voices to be silenced by anyone. Not to mention that Vice President Boakai is one of several candidates seeking the presidency of Liberia; he is a job – seeker, and the sooner Speaker Norquay gets it, the better chances for UP’s ticket.

  18. The story needs to be republished to indicate where Hon. Nuquay made these threatening and the context. We all have had experienced some Freudian slips when we speak off the record. The story or reporting is inflamed!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here