‘Senator Johnson Supports VP Boakai’

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Nimba County Representative Matenokay Tingban, the Chairman on Recruitment and Mobilization for the campaign to elect Vice President Joseph N. Boakai President in the 2017 presidential and legislative elections, has announced that Senator Prince Yormie Johnson has finally thrown in his hat to support the Vice President.

Rep. Tingban, who spoke in Monrovia yesterday, said his responsibility is to go all out and bring back on board people who might have swayed in their allegiance to other camps, and that his recent discussion with Nimba County’s political godfather, Senator Johnson, is good for Vice President Boakai.

“Discussion with my brother Senator Johnson two days ago has finally put to rest the question as to where he goes come 2017. As national chair on recruitment and mobilization, I can emphatically tell you that Senator Johnson is supporting Joe Boakai,” the Nimba lawmaker, who recently announced his return to the Unity Party, said yesterday.

It may be recalled that Senator Johnson, a former Unity Party member recently urged Senator George Weah to give in to Vice President Boakai for the Presidency, describing him (VP) as more experienced and qualified.

He, however, later recanted and instead called on the Vice President to resign from ‘the corrupt government of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf as he did while he served as agriculture minister in the late Samuel Doe’s regime, which was then considered corrupt.”

Tingban agreed that there are many factors involved in a political journey and that the issue involving Joe Boakai and Senator Johnson is one such factor. “We need to purchase a political yellow machine to make the road smooth,” a project he said is already in the works.

Reacting to recent accusations that the Nimba County campaign to elect Joe Boakai is isolating other tribes in favor of the Mano tribe, Rep. Tingban denied the allegation.

“I always try to reject the infusion of tribe in politics, and have always warned people against such. My engagement in Nimba with respect to Joe Boakai is not based on tribal lines; I am taking the whole thing holistically as Nimba citizens, be it Gio, Mano, Mandingo and the rest; I am not going after tribe, but rather citizens and residents of Nimba,” he said.

He maintained that there is cordiality between the Gios and Manos, noting that there is no problem between the two tribes and those who wish to see it otherwise need to disarm now. “We still remember what happened in Rwanda in 1994, and we don’t want such carnage here,” he said.

Tingban, who won District #9 as independent candidate, has meanwhile decried what he described as the over multiplicity or proliferation of political parties, and accused founders of those parties of trying to establish dictatorial empires, “with them at the helm of power.”

“The formation of political parties should be the collection of people with like minds having the full determination to bring good things to the table for its people. It is not an institution to be centered on an individual who is the prime decision maker of that particular institution. A political party is a government in waiting, so it should not be centered on an individual who will always direct its course of action,” he said.

He observed that those forming new political parties are people who have once been or are still in the current government, and participated in its running.

“What value is there that they did not carry to the table that they have to form their own party before they can take it there,” Tingban wondered. “The formation of these parties is all characterized by greed.”

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