By Kadiker Rex Dahn, MA, M.Ed, PhD
Few months ago, the nation lost one of the best female Senators, Geraldine Doe-Sheriff. The death of Senator Doe-Sheriff brought grief to thousands of Liberians, including this author. Similar tragedy also occurred in the family of Representative Adolph Lawrence of District #15, Montserrado County.
With these great losses, some disgruntled members of the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) were in jubilation and nasty calls were made by individuals on local radios in Monrovia, concerning these deaths. On the social media, others posted derogatory and inhumane comments about the death of the two lawmakers and fellow Liberians. Here again, in tears, we say may their souls rest in peace.
As is constitutionally required, after death of a sitting elected official, a by-election is declared in an effort to replace the fallen elected official. This is now the case with both the senatorial seat once occupied by Geraldine Doe-Sherif and the Representative seat also once occupied by Adolph Lawrence. Many fine Liberians have declared their intensions and are vigorously canvassing to become the next senator of Montserrado County. We ask, who actually among these candidates, that is best suited for now to carry on the political struggles championed by Senator Doe-Sheriff and Representative Adolph Lawrence and ably represent the people of Montserrado County? We will argue in this article that at the senatorial level, our choice is Abraham Darius Dillon.
Discussions: Macdella Cooper and Paulita Wie
Our focus in this article is on the senatorial candidates and not those of the representatives. Many have argued that since the seat in question was once occupied by a female, the next and incoming senator should also be a female, because that will help to increase women’s representation in the Liberian Legislature. That is a fine argument because I strongly believe in gender equality and equal opportunities for all regardless of sex, ethnicity or religion.
However, two of the formidable female candidates in question, MacDella Cooper and Paulita Wie are no Geraldine Doe-Sheriff in principles, thoughts and actions. Geraldine was one of the faces of women in the Liberian Senate, a true feminist and an icon who ably represented the people of Montserrado County. Unlike the Geraldine, one cannot really boast of their past and present records of MacDella Cooper and Paulita Wie, except that both may have ‘strong political’ connection with President George Weah.
Blindly voting anyone of them without serious thoughts and entrusting them with the Liberian Senate, especially the present state of affairs in our country would be tantamount to voting for George Weah without a clear cut political platform. Of recent, the Senate is being besieged by claims of incompetence bordering in its leadership inability to clearly maintain itself as a separate branch of government. Both women as it has been alleged in an unclear term in whatever form or manner are acquaintances of President Weah, whose performances as President have been questionable. Do they want to enter the Liberian Senate to actually work for the people of Montserrado County or simply to advance the cause of President George Weah? Where the nation stands with respect to the hunger and thirst for actual representation; we do not need to endorse or vote individuals who want to navigate their way into power.
The Liberian Senate is not for socialization, but for real and serious business. It is not a child play institution, and some we ignorantly elected continue to abuse the power we gave them. With such dismal performances of elected leaders in the Liberian senate in recent history, question continues to arise as to whether that august body still have the mantle of respect where once upon a time, it was referred to as the “House of Elders.” We have been going around Montserrado and have not seen the platform of any of the females in question.
What we have seen thus far are photos of Macdella Cooper beautifully and neatly dressed in African attire, but regrettably, Paulita Wie looks like someone posting for a pageant show with an uncontrolled flamboyant hair style. The Senate is not for flamboyancy. How will someone vote an individual when that person’s face is not clearly seen? An individual who has expressed interest to be an elected official for the people covering face is a bad omen. We wonder whether Paulita Wie is hiding something, ashamed of her own face, simply bluffing or a combination of these assertions? The people of Montserrado County deserves better; they must elect leaders not because President Weah say so, but these leaders must give platforms where when elected, they can be held accountable. We have not seen such platforms for these two women, and therefore should not elect them because of political connections. Apart from these women, there are other individuals canvassing to replace the fallen Geraldine Doe-Sheriff.
Kimie Weeks and Reverend Samuel Enders
One of such person who is canvassing to replace Geraldine Doe-Sheriff is Kimie Weeks. Kimie Weeks could make a fine senator but at this point in time, I do not think the time is correct. Kimie weeks was misled and encouraged to get into the senatorial race. It could have been prudent for Kimie Weeks to stay out of the race, because of the present legal tussle is brother, Milton Weeks is going through. Critics may say why tie Kimie to his brother, because both are adults and each is responsible for his own action. Granted! But what these critics do not understand is that both are brothers and the family name is being drag in the mud without tangible evidence. This is where in our opinion, the family should collectively join resources get the best brains for legal representation and redeem the family’s name and image.
In our gullible society, no matter how Kimie is not responsible for his brother’s alleged action, he may directly or indirectly be tied to him. Consequently, it would be prudent in our opinion that Kimie decline and endorse another candidate, preferably Abraham Darius Dillon or who he thinks can ably represent the people of Montserrado County.
Another candidate in our opinion that should not participate in the race is Reverend Samuel Enders, the Representatives of District #6, Montserrado County. Enders was elected as a Representative of District # 6 in 2017 and without serious deliverables, is trying to become a Senator. Enders, it is alleged that his Dream Academy is registered in the United States under 501-C where it is stipulated that all who receive such tax support from U.S. Tax-payers are not to directly engage in politics.
Enders opponents did not do their home to take issue with him and again, Enders is engaging in active politics where he is making himself vulnerable to complaint in the United States for possible tax violation. Politics is nasty and at this juncture, maintain that if the allegation of 501-C violation is true, the best Enders can do here now is to desist immediately or else makes himself liable for further investigation.
Abraham Darius Dillon
The last of the serious candidate for the purpose of this article we could like to discuss is Abraham Darius Dillon. All of the candidates, based on our analysis, the best person among the men and women canvassing for the senatorial seat in Montserrado County is Abraham Darius Dillon. Dillon has been consistent with his politicking in Liberia and based on his consistency and character, the people of Montserrado County should without doubt elect him as the next Senator of Montserrado. Dillon consistency was also demonstrated in the second round of the presidential election between former Vice President, Joseph N. Boakai, and Senator at the time, George Weah.
For example, while others, including the vice running-mate to Cllr. Charles Brumskine and other party leaders, cross-carpeted to the CDC, Dillon remained steadfast and loyal to the political leader. This was loyalty at the highest level. His platform which speaks of advocacy, transparency and accountability clear speaks to the character of Dillon. In addition to these characteristics, Dillon is a man of peace. His peaceful demeanor was demonstrated during the June 7, 2019, when he consistently told Liberians and the world that the protest would be peaceful. Dillon’s utterances have always been peaceful, a seasoned politician and diplomat.
Others like President Weah and his surrogates have questioned the credential of Dillon and asked him to go back to school. Whether President Weah is schooled more than Dillon in terms of, competency, articulation, concise and broad understandings of the political dynamics and functionary of the Liberian government will be the focus of our next article under the topic: President Weah’s unorthodox utterances: A Conduit to Self-Annihilation and Denigration of the Presidency?
With that said, as one of the intellectuals from Nimba County, an American educated who obtained two Masters and a Doctor of Philosophy, I hereby declare that Dillon is competent and qualified. Therefore, I offer full support and endorse him to be elected as a Senator of Montserrado County. Consequently, I ask that all citizens from Nimba County and Liberians of all persuasions living and registered in Montserrado County to vote for Abraham Darius Dillon. In the Cause of the People, the Struggle Continues!!!
About the author: Kadiker Rex Dahn holds two Masters and a PhD in Historical, Philosophical and Social Foundations of Education from the University of Oklahoma. He respectively once served as a Deputy Minister of Education and Deputy Director General, National Commission on Higher Education. He is a member of the North America Scholar consortium, membership with the Highest Honor. Contact: [email protected]