On July 31, voters in Montserrado County will go to the polls to elect a new senator to succeed George Weah, who left the seat vacant when he got elected President of Liberia in 2017.
The vacant Senate seat, which is up for grabs, is important as voters go to polls for a leader who can lobby to attract investment in the county as social amenities decline and unemployment soar.
And one of those candidates is radio personality-turned-politician Bernard Benson, alias Dj Blue, who says he is confident of winning the upcoming election. He told the Daily Observer that his major opponents in the race cannot beat him, because of his proven track record of being a voice for the hopeless as well as his ability to speak the truth.
“The people of Montserrado County need credible representation, and they can only find that in me. They see me as a fresh voice and an ideal candidate, because I am not a recycled politician or part of the elite politicians that have ruined them. No one can beat me,” DJ Blue said.
He added, “I am going to win this election, because I am contesting to bring empowerment to the forgotten masses by ensuring what is allocated to this county in the country’s budget is used to benefit them. The people are tired, so they need a leader who will not be a bench warmer, but a forceful voice in the legislature to lift the people out of poverty.”
According to him, his senatorial bid aims to see Montserrado County rising again through the development of youth talent.
During his campaign tour, the ace DJ and owner of Hott FM and TV, one of Liberia’s most popular entertainment media outlets, has endeavored to establish a loan scheme for the art and culture industry, which will lead to the creation of a better movie or music industry, which he says is his primary goal.
He said the loan scheme will be given with no interest for people that work in the creative industry, to improve on production of quality movies, music and more as well as setting policies for royalties generation.
“This country can only become better if the youthful population’s skill and talent are harnessed. I am going to do this through legislation. It is about time we recognize the creative industries as an engine of growth,” Dj Blue added. “It is about time the creative industry, comprising of music and movies, be empowered with resources to improve production, which will in turn lead to funding of the country’s youthful population’s talent and skill.”
Why this election matters
Although the election started with little euphoria, it is an important one for voters in Montserrado since they lack a strong voice in the Senate to push their plight, like a number of senators are doing in other counties.
It matters because many of the youth population in the county are talented, but complained that their talents over the years have been stagnated due to lack of support from people who they voted for to stand up for them by creating an avenue for their talent to grow.
Many voters, who the Daily Observer spoke to, seemed to be moved by DJ Blue’s vision to create an avenue that would improve their career through his proposed loan scheme.
However, DJ Blue has been criticized by other voters for focusing more on the creative industry, and not to work with his colleagues by using their oversight responsibilities to enforce the decent work bill. But the media mogul has defended his stance, saying no sector in Liberia has been neglected as compared to the creative industry and says he plans to hold companies accountable for their actions.
Born and raised in Brewerville, DJ Blue’s radio station Hott FM has reached a population of over 100,000, and is helping Liberian music to reach almost every part of the country, employing over 50 people, with branches in Ganta and Gbarnga respectively.