Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence announced today that, after consultations with key political actors in the opposition, she maintains her support for Unity Party Standard Bearer Joseph N. Boakai ahead of the October 10 elections. Below is the full text of her statement.
STATEMENT BY SENATOR NYONBLEE KARNGA-LAWRENCE POLITICAL LEADER OF LIBERTY PARTY ON DECLARATION OF THE PARTY’S POSITION ON ITS POLITICAL ENGAGEMENT WITH THE UNITY PARTY
May 14, 2023
Ambassador Joseph N. Boakai, Former Vice President of Liberia and Standard-Bearer of the Unity Party;
Senator Jeremiah Kpan Koung, Vice Standard Bearer of the Unity Party;
The National Chairman and members of the National Executive Committee of the Unity Party; The former Chairman and SG of the UP, Hon. Amin Modad and Mr. Mo Ali; Heads of other collaborating political parties;
Members of the Executive Committee of the Liberty Party;
Stakeholders and members of Liberty Party; The Chairman and members of our diaspora chapter; Members of the clergy;
The Fourth Estate;
The Chairman and Members of the Grand Bassa Chapter of the Liberty Party;
Fellow Liberians in radio land;
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen
We assemble here today in fulfillment of a patriotic duty to take a course of action that will mark the beginning of a significant turn in the political history of our beloved country.
Our action and direction today is in execution of identifying, declaring and defending the right path, a path meant to put country first and foremost.
On April 28, 2023, former Vice President Boakai named my colleague from Nimba County, Senator Jeremiah Koung, as his running mate in the 2023 Presidential and Legislative Elections. This naming was greeted with mixed public reactions, because of the overwhelming support we have gotten for the past two years from a cross section of Liberians from across the Country as their preferred choice to be the running mate to Amb. Boakai.
We appreciate the public trust and support and all the concerns, but we must now look deeper beyond not naming us. It must all be a part of God’s plan, that this time is Koung’s and not Nyonblee’s.
I should also let you know that following the nomination of my colleague, I received in audience at my residence in Buchanan, some of our national political actors, seeking the approval of my team and myself to feature on their tickets.
Mr. Alexander B. Cummings followed by Ambassador Boakai who had come a few days following the nomination, to see me for the consolidation of our efforts. Then, came one of Liberia’s best legal minds and astute statesman, Cllr. Tiawon Gongloe of the Liberian People’s Party (LPP). Our team met with teams designated by these individuals and had frank discussions. Those discussions and the different layers of consultations have given us an insight into why and how we must act.
In arriving at the decision we announce here today following those engagements, we were guided by the following considerations:
1. The safeguarding of the political image of me and my team;
2. The general direction of our partisans and supporters;
3. The prospects of forming a winning ticket at this time of the electoral calendar; and,
4. The long-term best interest of the nation.
In relation to Mr. Cummings’ ANC, we do not see it necessary to form a political alliance at this time. We believe actors on our national political stage must have a deeper self-examination of trending political events that could lend themselves to political collaboration or the reverse thereof. In Liberty Party’s specific case, it would be a deviation and indeed a betrayal of the trust and confidence of our thousands of partisans to unwittingly find the Political Leader sitting on the ticket with Mr. Cummings in light of his unending support to the man whose desire is to render Liberty Party politically paralyzed and divided. As a matter of fact, Mr. Bility is recalcitrant that he does not recognize the authority of the Political Leadership of the Liberty Party, something that the ANC, through its actions and inactions, tacitly supported and concretized all along, thereby rendering his belated attempt to change course to have limited effect.
What is even more disturbing and unconscionable is the fact that the ANC folks are inclined to believe that the only way we could gain control of LP is to accept the running mate slot, and every other thing will fall into place. To accept such an offer will demonstrate sheer greed for power on our part, and this will be the less honorable path to tread.
In essence, to form a presidential ticket with individuals who conspired with a compromised system to rob us of deserved justice, would only be interpreted as approving the same system that we are endeavoring to change. Even more, it would be a demonstration of desperation for political power. We could never and will never fall in such trap.
In reference to the Liberian People’s Party of Cllr. Tiawan Gongloe, we recognize Cllr. Gongloe’s endless fight for social justice and economic opportunities for our people. In both public and private life, he has demonstrated, like our late founding father, Cllr. Charles W. Brumskine, commitment to reforms in our society. However, the overwhelming feedback from consultations with our partisans and supporters both at home and abroad did not favor our pairing with Cllr. Gongloe at this time.
Fellow partisans, when we initially decided to team up with Ambassador Boakai to embark on a rescue mission a few years back, we did so against the background of his public service records, qualification, experience and his love for country. To simply disengage from this process on account of not being named as running mate, would speak less of our honesty and commitment to contributing to the change that Liberia so deserves and finds in the person of Ambassador Boakai.
Therefore, in consideration of the selfless agenda that we brought to the table when we embarked on the journey with this astute statesman and following two weeks of consultations with a broad spectrum of the membership of our party, stakeholders and sympathizers at home and abroad, I am pleased to announce that we wholeheartedly endorse the Boakai-Koung Ticket.
As we set the train in motion for the rescue mission, I call on all Liberians including our partisans and supporters across the length and breadth of Liberia and in the diaspora to join us to support this ticket. It is about the country and its future. Liberia stands to regain its lost image if we all work for the success of this ticket.
By this decision, we know that we are standing against some of the powerful people of this country. But please bear with us, it’s time to set a new agenda for our country. And we want to actively contribute in setting that new agenda. Let God be God and man be man.
To our international partners, we say thank you for your involvement with Liberia from the inception of the civil crisis to now. We know that you can and will do more to help us guide our democratic course. We have an ardent desire to work for that Liberia that our children and our children’s children, would be proud of. Now is the time. A new Liberia is on the horizon. We must, as a nation, stand tall to the challenge.
To the women of Liberia, I stand here as the chairperson of the women legislative caucus, the first female Senator of Grand Bassa County serving two terms, the only female in the Liberian Senate of 30 members for two years until I was joined by another woman, a female political leader, one of the champions of female participation,
I call on all the women of Liberia to join me in this effort not because the ticket is a perfect ticket as there is no perfection anywhere, but because the two individuals on the ticket – Amb. Joseph Boakai and Jeremiah Koung are two of the proudest sons gifted to our nation by two humble and struggling women; two of the proudest sons with a plan to THINK LIBERIA, LOVE LIBERIA, and BUILD LIBERIA. So, as mothers of the land, I call on you all to join me to embrace our children, our two fine sons, Joseph and Jeremiah, so that we can collectively rescue our country. And you know as well as I do, when we, the mothers, bless our children, God Almighty usually brings success to the family. Amb. Boakai and Senator Koung have asked me to be the Mother on the Rescue Team; and I, representing the women and girls on this rescue mission, wholeheartedly accept the offer.
We thank God for His GRACE, and His Grace is sufficient for me. We thank the public for the love and support from across the nation Liberians in the diaspora, The UP Women in Liberia and the Diaspora. The LP Women in Liberia, the LP USA and LP Liberia, the people of the Bassa belt, Madam Julia Bundo and the entire What the Women Say organization, my colleagues in the Legislature, my private consultants and advisors, The Nyonblee Karnga Lawrence Movement, church leaders , elders and chiefs, my office staff, my social media fans, the Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence National Youth mentoring teams, The Nyonblee Cares Foundation, staffers of the Liberian Senate in support of our cause, my father and family and children; I thank ALL OF YOU for the endless love and support, most importantly I want to give a special recognition to the Liberty core team, we worked tirelessly and have agreed that it is not about us but Liberia. I want to, in a particular way, thank Mr. Jacob Smith for being the brain behind our party; to Senator Abraham Darius Dillon for being the Senator of the most popularity who has added value to our party; to my other colleagues, Senators Zargo, Kaipay and Barchue, for their commitment and wisdom to stay course, to our diaspora organization for its unending support, financially and morally, to the clergy men and women who stood by our founding father to lay the foundation of our party, to the Friends of Brumskine Organization for being the Foundation Stone, and many others who have stood in defending the cause of Liberty Party.
We thank God for his Grace!
We still RISE in the midst of all…
Again, we say, our loyalty to country is stronger and more important than our personal ambition or the personal ambition of any other individual.
I thank you