Independent senatorial candidate for Montserrado County, Robert Alvin Sirleaf, has openly apologized for “any comment [he] might have made which is wrongly interpreted that [he] meant to hurt anyone who disturbs [his] campaign”.
The controversial senatorial aspirant visited a community of Red Hill in Virginia, just outside of Monrovia on November 8 and let rip his emotions at a group of people who had protested his campaign.
“Let me come back in Red Hill Field and catch one of them,” Robert Sirleaf said with a clenched fist and an angry tone. “Let me come back in this community. Plenty people holding placards, I can’t wait to catch them… they will feel their stomach coming out of their stomach. And when I’m finished with them, and they think they can come hold something, I will deal with them in my most final way [like] the Ebola virus. I will make them bleed…”
Professing to be a very peaceful and civil person, he described his recent threatening remarks as based on “emotion as a human being”. But he maintained that the context from which he spoke was perceived differently.
“I profusely apologize to the people of Montserrado County,” Mr. Sirleaf stated during a radio talk show yesterday, marking the first day of the campaign of the Special Senatorial Elections.
The President’s son expressed optimism of winning the Senate Seat for Montserrado County despite the popularity of the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) candidate George M. Weah. He attributed his optimism to his being the most accomplished candidate in Montserrado County in terms infrastructure development and meeting the welfare and educational needs of the people.
Sirleaf has been making the rounds in the county identifying with the needy through humanitarian initiatives.
“I respect people’s dignity. Therefore it’s my passion to help people,” Mr. Sirleaf said adding that “people, issues, respect and execution of development are my aspirations.”
The radio talk show was climaxed with a pre-launch campaign paradewhich kicked off from the RCI Junction in the Duport Road Community to the ELWA junction.
Some of the supporters sang “Your leave us, da Sirleaf we want”, while others sang, “It hurting them”, interspersed political slogans.
Addressing scores of his supporters at the ELWA junction, Mr. Sirleaf said Liberians should believe in Liberia by “thinking forward” with the election of an able representative in the Liberian Senate.
Mr. Sirleaf, standing atop a pillar of a fence constructed by the Paynesville Municipality, thanked his supporters for turning outon day one of the campaign, and vowed to campaign to the end to ensure his victory.
“The battle has just begun and we will win this battle,” said Mr. Sirleaf, adding, “I am counting on all of your support as well as all those who want a better future.”
Meanwhile, football legend and former presidential candidate George Weah, the most popular politician in Montserrado County judging from the results of the last two presidential elections, has ruled out complacency.
Weah told VOA recently that he will win the contest, having won the county in the last two presidential elections against President Sirleaf. Last week, 14 lawmakers from Montserrado County presented Weah with a petition endorsing his candidacy.
Despite his popularity, Weah as well as Sirleaf could face strong competition from Dr. Chris Neyor, the former head of the National Oil Company of Liberia, as well as Benjamin Sanvee, the 33 year-old former youth leader during the Charles Taylor era.
Neyor is promising change when elected to the Senate but Sanvee professes that he is the real candidate of change, vowing that if elected, he will fight for what he calls “bread and butter” issues, as well as the establishment of an anti-corruption court to fast-track corruption cases.
The Special Senatorial Elections will be held on Tuesday, December 16, 2014 throughout the country, but in the case of an upsurge of the Ebola virus in a particular county at the time of the election, the election in the affected county could be deferred and treated as a by-election under Article 37 of the Constitution of Liberia.