Urey, Pointing an Accusing Finger Is Not Enough

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The political leader of the All Liberian Party (ALP), Benoni Urey, is one politician who has in recent days accused the Unity Party led government of corruption.  At the ALP’s recent political rally in Ganta, Nimba County, where he selected Alexander Duopue as his running mate, Mr. Urey called on Liberians to ensure that Unity Party does not win the upcoming election.  “Let’s Remove this corrupt system,” he insisted.

The statement in Ganta is not the first that Urey has expressed in his determination to prevent the ruling Unity Party from securing a third term in Liberia.  Early this year, Mr. Urey, in an interview with the Daily Observer stated, “I am not wishing that I become President of this country at all cost, but to ensure that this corrupt government does not get a third term in office.”

There have indeed been reports of corruption in the Unity Party-led government and by many public officials, most without trial. Of the few that have gone to trial, government prosecutors have lost those cases.

The truthfulness of corruption in this government is indisputable, as confessed by President Sirleaf in her last Annual  Message last  January.  Earlier, the President even took responsibility for the bankruptcy of the National Oil Company (NOCAL) under her son Robert Sirleaf’s leadership. Whatever the case, it is expected in this election that the ruling party will face serious accusation of corruption especially during the campaign period.  This will definitely be one of the charges which the UP standard bearer, Vice President Joseph N. Boakai, will have to contend with.  He must first, if at all he can, attempt to distance himself for the widespread corruption that has taken place under the watch of President Ellen Sirleaf and his watch.  He must go further to convince the Liberian people, again if at all he can, that his administration will be different.

Nevertheless, as politicians, including Benoni Urey, criticize, they must also be realistic enough to tell Liberians the main cause(s) of corruption and provide way forward as to how to go about eliminating or minimizing it.  Urey and the rest of the politicians need to realize that the very officials of this government are related to them and are perhaps part of the corrupt system.

Let us see the instance with Benjamin Sanvee, former Chairman of the Liberty Party and a beneficiary of the Private Sector Development Initiative (PSDI) fund intended to help Liberian businesses.  He took the money, did not pay and kept silent for years until his name surfaced just in recent days.

The most frustrating and deceptive aspect is that when the same corrupt officials defect from the ruling party and join oppositions, they are embraced and praised to be some of the good people on earth.  Does this not imply hypocrisy and dishonesty?  Greek Philosopher, Socrates wrote this about deception:  “Man’s mind is so found that it is far more susceptible to falsehood than to truth.”   While we cannot dispel that this government engaged in widespread corruption,  people that wishing to grab the presidency and other elective positions should be fair and honest in presenting their platforms, citing in them definite measures to combat corruption and doing everything possible to convince the public that those seeking office are determined and serious about repeating the terrible mistakes of the past.  Criticizing the past is definitely not enough.

Now that Mr. Urey is aiming to ascend to the highest position of the land, Liberians will be happy to know what his economic and social platforms are for Liberia.  More importantly, he needs to come clean with Liberians and tell them when and how he started business to become the wealthy man that he is.  What business did Mr. Urey engage in prior to the ascendancy of Charles Taylor as President of Liberia.

People are anxious to know how, now that Mr. Urey anxiously seeks the presidency, how he managed the Bureau of Maritime Affairs during the regime of Taylor.

Explanation is needed from Mr. Urey about his connection with Sanjivan Ruprah (alas Samir NASR), an arms dealer named in the United Nations Security Council Report on Liberia.  The report states that Mr. Urey was the direct supervisor of Mr. Ruprah, and both of them played key role in arm procurements starting in the summer of 2002.

The UN Security Council Resolution 1343 placing travel restriction on officials of the Taylor Administration names Benoni Urey for being one that secured money at Maritime and facilitated purchase of arms through Ruprah.  Can Urey make his side clear to the Liberian people in this matter?  If he realistically wants to see Liberia moving forward without rampant corruption, can Urey evaluate and tell the Liberian people which of the two governments, the one he served in and the current one, was impactful?  In a state of an ethical dilemma wherein one needs to compare the two evils to choose the lesser, what conclusions can Urey draw between the regime he served in as a Commissioner of Maritime and this government of corrupt public officials?

We bring all these concerns to remind Mr. Urey and other politicians about the past and present so they may adequately be able to defend themselves to win the minds of Liberians.

The challenge is, therefore, yours, Mr. Urey, to convince Liberian voters on things that make you different from current officials who have instituted a corrupt system that has grossly mishandled the affairs of the Liberian people.  Pointing the accusing finger is not enough, but dealing forthrightly and convincingly the rest of your own fingers pointing at you is what truly matters.

How different are you from the accused? Liberians need your answers!

Author

8 COMMENTS

  1. To add to what the Editorial Writer has so boldly written, this Presidential Election is characterized by two issues: Hatred and Hypocrisy! And Brumskine, Urey, Jones, Cummings, and Weah are guilty of both.
    Is it not laughable when Urey, Warlord Taylor’s right hand man and business partner, is accusing the Sirleaf administration of corruption? Is his accusation not a clear case of “Pot calling Teakettle black”? What did Urey invent the demand for which made him to become the richest man in Liberia? What did Urey say to President Sirleaf when she was spending millions of government money to help elect Clemens Urey, Benoni’s biological brother to the Senate? Is Benoni’s brother corrupt since he’s an official of President Sirleaf administration? As arms buyer for Charles Taylor’s criminal regime, Urey is directly complicit in the massacre of 300, 000 mostly innocent Liberians for which he duly stands to be prosecuted if a nationalist government emerges out of the October election.
    Brumskine is even a worse hypocrite. While condemning the government as corrupt, he recruits leaders of his moribund LP from it. And not only that, leaders of his LP do accept appointments in said government. And not only that, Brumskine himself has never turned down offer of job from the corrupt Sirleaf government.
    Mills Jones is the worst. Without the governorship at the Central Bank, how was he going to get hold of the money he. now has to run an expensive Presidential Campaign?
    And what did George Weah do with the $5m USD given his National Reconciliation Commission by the corrupt Sirleaf administration? Why did he not turn down his appointment by Sirleaf, since her administration is corrupt?
    Yet Weah had the audacity to send thugs to assault a sitting Vice President of Liberia last week in Claratown, having chosen a running mate whose former husband had murdered Kpolleh, the most prominent Kpelle politician and thousands of innocent Liberians.
    Fellow Native Liberians, let us remain united in support of Boakai & Nuquay. They qualified and they are our own Native brothers.

    May God bless Liberia, our common patrimony!

    I

      • Thank you my friend, so because your family member got endorsement from a politician who turned out to be corrupt, does that make you corrupt too? Or so all the others are corrupt so then we should vote for the proven corrupt politician? What a bunch nonsense.

  2. Here we go again a nonsense comment from Mr. Emmanuel Saiingbe, “Fellow Native Liberians”. Look Mr. Saingbe, I am sick and tired of your irrational comment. In this 21th century, we are tired of this divide. We need to come together and build our country. Liberia will not rise under such nonsense. Do you think young people of today care about wasting pressure time? I will edge you to read the story of a young Sierra Leonean boy called Kelvin Doe-very fascinating. Young people want a better world where they will able to compete. Tribalism will not get you anywhere. I am not judging you but most likely, it seems or perhaps your childhood environment was surrounded by negatives and those have effected your brain of rational thinking. Seek therapy.

  3. Again Mr saingbe, instead the reason is not about the best interest about Liberia but Nonsense. I find this deeply dehumanizing because it reduces our extent as all Liberians to mere props used to manage a divide. And speaking of nonsense, never, ever link this nonsense. I edge you to use social media to teach young people. Teach them to strife for something higher. We are here today and gone tomorrow. Thx.

  4. Again Mr saingbe, instead the reason is not about the best interest about Liberia but Nonsense. I find this deeply dehumanizing because it reduces our existence, all Liberians to mere props used to manage a divide. And speaking of nonsense, never, ever link this nonsense. I edge you to use social media to teach young people. Teach them to strife for something higher. We are here today and gone tomorrow. Thx.

  5. A UN Security Council intelligence assessment report on our Republic for 2013 revealed that she was “fragile, fraught, and factional”, a claim confirmed two years later by USAID Monrovia’s own security evaluation. Both reports haven’t been downgraded, hence the country is still in a combustible mix with our governing politicos not trying very hard to move to a safer distance surrounding flammable materials (signs of misrule) such as gasoline, matches, kerosene, etc.

    Imagine that major elections like what’s pending this year, no matter where, indicate government uncertainty. Imagine that arrogant greed of the powers – that – be has accelerated hopelessness of the masses, and widening the divide between the haves and have – nots. Imagine that strategists have been advising there political bosses to fuel wedge issues like defanging the CoC to divert public anger from failure to ensure responsive responsible leadership.

    And right in the midst of all the above – mentioned potential indicators of destabilization, now imagine educated commenters, mostly, far from the hurly burly in Liberia fanning the basest of identity politics, ethnicity, as in the following: “Fellow Native Liberians, let us remain united in support of Boakai & Nuquay. They qualified and they are our own Native brothers”.

    Once again, we would want to remind all Liberians that powerful few Native and Congua elites are responsible for the suffering of the powerless many Native and Conqua masses. So to continue fanning the false implication that the situation of the latter is better than the former stinks of incitement. That’s how sectarian civil wars are stoked, and the disastrous outcomes were evident in Nigeria, Riwanda, Uganda, and so on.

    For heaven’s sake, if VP Boakai and Speaker Nuquay (or any presidential ticket for that matter) are destined to win they should be elected by Liberians, Natives & Conquas together, and not a single ethnic group. It won’t be a mandate for their agenda, by the way.

    Good governance, which is what lacking in our polity, won’t be brought about by ethnicity, or exclusiveness. Instead, it is achievable only with ethical, innovative, and transformational figures correcting the course of a nation careering toward a precipice. Thus anything short of total inclusiveness in lieu of a government of national unity would be unwise. No wonder, then, ensuring that the “true will” of the electorates prevail is an existential primacy: a precondition for stability and peace.

  6. Urey has no moral competence to challenge any presidential candidate in the race or the Government of Liberia. His so-called wealth was obtained under dubious and criminal arrangements and so, his arguments based on politics does not hold water.

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