Presidency Palaver Worsens Between Cummings, Boakai

Former Vice President of Liberia, Joseph N. Boakai, left and former Coca-Cola executive, Alexander B. Cummings.

The Alternative National Congress has accused former Vice President Joseph Boakai of conspiring with others to circumvent the holding of democratic primaries at the expense of undermining the unity of the Collaborating Political Parties.

The ANC in a press release noted that Boakai is engaged in such an act knowing that he will lose to their candidate, Alexander Cummings.

"Amb. Boakai knows he will lose to the Candidate of REAL CHANGE, Mr. Alexander Cummings, in a CPP Democratic Primary as provided for in the Framework Agreement," the ANC said.

The statement added: "As a result, he is conspiring with others to circumvent the holding of democratic primaries even at the expense of undermining the unity of the CPP, including beclouding it with public doubts and risking the desire of the Liberian people to make President Weah a one-term President. This is without honor and shameful to the core."

The ANC seems to be angry with a revelation from the former Vice President that Cummings is unable to defeat President Weah in the 2023 general election.

Boakai, standard-bearer of the Unity Party and chair of the CPP told the BBC in an interview that among all the opposition candidates in Liberia, he remains the only one capable of defeating the Weah administration.

When quizzed about the idea of Alexander Cummings heading the CPP to challenge President Weah, Boakai said “I have said it right that the only person that can defeat George Weah is Joe Boakai. "

And when pressed further as to whether he thinks Cummings can defeat Weah, he responded, “I don’t think so.”

Meanwhile, the ANC said despite Boakai's remark, there are two facts not lost to the Liberian people: that President Weah is a "failure" and he only wants a "real" change candidate in the person of Cummings.

"The first is that President Weah is a total failure and he is incompetent and misleading Liberia into backwardness, and Liberians into worsening economic conditions," the ANC added. "The second fact is that there is only one REAL CHANGE candidate with the pedigree, track record, and clean hands to turn things around for the better. That candidate is Cummings, who is unencumbered by corruption and Liberia's history of misrule. "

Framework Work

The ANC also expressed disappointment in Joseph for using his medical visit to the United States to paint the CPP as having problems with its Framework Agreement (FA).

The ANC in a statement said, the FA, which is the instrument that binds the four parties, has been in existence for more than a year and has been repeatedly used to determine how the CPP functions and operated in many previous elections.

"After more than a year, it says a lot about the leadership capacities of anyone claiming alleged alteration. Despite pointing to the Framework Agreement as being the source of the CPP problems, it is yet to be established what was 'dubiously, viciously, and purposefully altered allegedly by some nefarious individuals within the hierarchy of the CPP - and replaced by 'Alien Clauses to engender ulterior motives' as charged by Mr. Urey on August 18, 2021, " the release added.

However, Boakai in his BBC interview, said that the issues concerning the allegation of the CPP framework being tampered with, are something that he will resolve amicably because is good at resolving issues.

“This is a normal process in all organizations that they do have issues but what is important is that we can resolve them and that's what matters. Well! The issue is that we know that we have some problems with the framework document and those issues have been discovered,” he said. “I just took over as the chairperson and I came here. As people know me, I am good at resolving issues. So when I go back, definitely we will resolve those issues.”

But for the ANC, neither Amb. Boakai, Senator Karnga-Lawrence, nor Urey can point to alleged alterations in the FA to which they are in disagreement or that benefit the ANC.

"Their alteration talking point is a conspiratorial smokescreen which they believe by repeating, the falsehood will somehow become truthful," the release noted. "The stubborn truth remains that the amended version of the Framework Agreement, presented by the lawyers and approved by the parties, is materially, provisionally, and substantially the same as the one filed with the National Elections Commission. And this is a fact."

The ANC added that it is disingenuous for Amb. Boakai to be calling for reconciliation, and at the same time, continuing as his predecessor did, to throw around accusations he has reasons to know are patently false, as he and his co-conspirators have tried and failed to prove otherwise.

According to the release, the CPP does, however, have a problem but is not with the Framework Agreement, rather the ambitions of "so-called leaders who would like to pursue their ambitions through means other than the democratic primaries agreed to by all the parties."

The ANC release was signed by its Director of Communications, Mulbah K. Yorgbor, Jr.