— Says Chairman Wilmot Paye, as party dedicates plush national headquarters, inducts corps of officers to steer the affairs of the party
Monrovia and its environs have been experiencing some political quietude since the intense political activities experienced during the latter stages of last year which brought to the fore a reality check reminding the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) that it needed to buckle up and do better.
Despite the relative calmness witnessed for the last two months, the newly founded People’s Liberation Party (PLP) was successful in resurrecting political activities when hundreds of its members and sympathizers on Saturday, February 20, 2021, converged to send a clear message to all Liberians that it was dedicating its headquarters, inducting its interim leadership, and expressing its desire that it is ready for the political business.
Led by philanthropist turned politician, Dr. Daniel E. Cassell, the new political movement says it is not only in town for mere participation but to take the nation by storm and send a shockwave through the spine of the prevailing political establishment.
The PLP appears resolved to pursue this objective, which its political vision-bearer Dr. Cassell and team have to pursue in a short space of two years before the 2023 presidential and legislative elections.
The former embattled and outcast chairman of the former ruling Unity Party, Wilmot Paye, has been given a one-year mandate as PLP national chairman, leading a team of eight others, to ensure that the PLP challenges the status quo and establish itself as a formidable political force in the country.
Professed members of the party wearing green and white shirts converged at new headquarters in Congo Town chanting slogans and expressing support to Dr. Cassell whom they described as “Humanitarian.” All music at the dedication has lyrics portraying the PLP political vision bearer’s humanitarian aid to Liberians over time.
The hierarchy and members of the new political party wasted no time to express in euphoria their desire to join political forces in claiming Liberia for leadership. However, it also seemed naïve to passers-by to see a new political party when, in fact, political parties in Liberia are joining forces with other like-minded political institutions to amplify their impact and improve their chances at the polls. Liberia now has the Collaborating Political Parties, comprising four major political parties, the Rainbow Coalition that comprises about eleven political parties, and the Coalition for Democratic Change (ruling party) making up four political parties.
“PLP here for the poor, marginalized“
Upon inducting the party’s corps of officers, the vision bearer, Dr. Cassell, said in a brief remark that the PLP is now ready to embark on its mission to liberate the Liberian state and its people from the quagmire of poverty, disease, ignorance and underdevelopment suffered since the existence of the nation.
He said the party’s leadership must ensure that the political elites and cunning politicians, whose sole aims are to gain government employment and to amass illegal wealth, do not repeatedly victimize the marginalized, disenfranchised, and the poor in the society.
Dr. Cassell, who has been making name for himself recently as a friend of the poor and downtrodden, through his philanthropic activities, said Liberians are facing systematic challenges that undermine the little gains it has made since its formation.
“Our economy is still struggling to get back on its feet, unemployment is a major challenge and, to compound this, companies are still laying off workers, our people are still spectators in their own economy,” he said.
“Our education and health systems are challenged by inadequate domestic resource allocation, limited qualified and trained workforce, and poor service delivery especially for our rural communities and the most vulnerable and physically challenged groups,” he added.
Additionally, Dr. Cassell said the birth of the PLP is grounded in social justice, economic freedom, and human capital development. “In this spirit of patriotism; we welcome all Liberians to join hands with the PLP as the time is now and we are ready.”
He added that his team is ready to assume the leadership and transform Liberia through collective and inclusive participation.
“We are ready to advocate for and defend the rights of the poor and underprivileged. We are ready to lift Liberians out of poverty through value-added agriculture programs and road connectivity in which Liberians will be the drivers and not the car loaders. We are ready to bring our private sector experience to the public sector and transform our service industries to be efficient and effective in the delivery of quality services,” he emphasized.
Established and certificated in December 2020, the new party, according to its leadership, seeks to become the alternative political institution that will do all in its power to liberate the people from economic degradation, education paralysis, health immobility and agriculture decadence through inclusive participation of all Liberians, irrespective of your county, tribe, or social status.
“PLP’s core beliefs of diversity and inclusivity are based on the conviction that collectivism is the progressive path to move our nation forward,” he said.
He disclosed that the PLP’s political ideology and or manifestos is built on six social tenets: Agriculture, Socio-economic, Education, Health and Wellbeing, Employment, and Infrastructure Developments, with emphasis on improving Healthcare, Roads, Electricity, Water and Sewer, and Human Resource Development.
These tenets, he believes, are the key elements in dignifying the lives of the Liberian people and developing the country. “To these, we pledge our total commitment,” he stated.
He said the PLP is ready to reach out to all Liberians irrespective of their social-political or tribal affiliation to move Liberia forward.
Tackling political deceit
Interim Chairman Wilmot Paye, in his long induction speech, said that the PLP is here to reassure Liberians, especially the disadvantaged people, that by God’s special grace the politics of hypocrisy is about to change—adding that Liberia has no option except to embrace this new direction.
“Yes, the time is now because for too long Liberian political parties and their founders and leaders have professed to be what they are not. We have assembled here today to reverse this trend,” he said.
“In the not too distant future, we will celebrate the rebirth of our Nation. The long period of doom and gloom is only temporary,” Mr. Paye added.
He said unlike some political parties that adopt names and mottos which their founders and leaders do not truly believe in, the PLP will be different in conduct, attitude, behavior, actions, operations, decisions and character.
“Under our chairmanship, and with guidance from our Political Leader, The PLP will represent its name, motto, vision, philosophy, founding principles and our core values of Patriotism, Integrity, Accountability and Transparency,” he said, adding, “The PLP cannot compromise these values,” Chairman Paye assured.
Liberians at home and abroad, according to the former UP Chairman, are yearning for a political party that lives up to the true meaning of its own Vision, Philosophy, Founding Principles and Core Values. “The PLP is here to sanitize and purify Liberian politics, and the alternative to this is for Liberia to continue on the path that only leads to poverty and misery.”
He noted that for too long politics has been misrepresented and portrayed as a vehicle for promoting the selfish ambitions of corrupt individuals whose only motivation for entering politics is to exploit their own Nation.
“The PLP believes that Liberia cannot continue like this, especially in this 21st Century. This must change! I am not talking about a mere change of personnel,” Chairman Paye said.
He noted emphatically that the same traditional politicians that plunged Liberia into the current mess it is experiencing cannot lead any true transformation.
“Liberia needs a totally different breed of politicians. We cannot afford to disappoint them,” he stressed.
The newly inducted Chairman paid gratitude to the PLP family for the explicit confidence reposed in him to steer the affairs of the party.
“With faith in God who alone knows the future, I accept this honor and pledge total commitment, unflinching loyalty and allegiance to the ideals, vision, philosophy, founding principles and core values of The People’s Liberation Party,” he said.
He also paid tribute to the “Exceptional humility” of the party’s founding chairperson, Tapple E. Doe. “It is uncommon in Liberia for anyone to painstakingly go through the exacting task of organizing a political party and have another ascend to its chairmanship.”
Meanwhile, members of the diplomatic corps, representatives of political parties and national organizations graced the induction and dedication ceremonies.
Those inducted include Mr. Wilmot Paye, National Chairperson, Mr. Tapple E. Doe, vice Chairperson for Administration and Finance, Mr. Alphanso Banda, Vice Chairperson for operations and Mr. David W. Beyan, Deputy Secretary.
Others were Israel Maryoe, Vice Chairperson for Recruitment and Mobilization, Stephen Vorkpor, Assistant Secretary for Press and Media Relations, Carlos Tingba Edison, Acting Chairperson of the Youth Assembly, and Christiana Christopher, Vice Chairperson for the Women Assembly.