The Informer (Monrovia)

Liberia: Dozen Politicians Cross To Ruling UP As 2011 Election Draws Nearer

Ahead of the 2011 general and presidential elections more opposition politicians have crossed carpet to the ruling Unity Party (UP).
The move comes in a wake of the recent merger of two opposition political parties - Liberia Action Party (LAP) and Liberia Unification Party (LUP) - with the UP.

At brief ceremony held at the UP headquarters Friday, a dozen opposition politicians - all from the United People's Party (UPP) - pledged their total loyalty to the ruling party with solemn commitments.
Those who crossed carpet to the UP include Mr. Thomas Romeo Quioh, Gabrie Tarplah, Brown Pour, Joseph K. Roberts, Sylvia T. Campbell, and Nyankoon Davis. Others are Victoria Wiah J. Cordohman Seedee, K. Sylvester Pyne William Miller and Major T. Samukia.
Speaking during programs marking the formalization of their membership to the UP, Mr. Thomas Romeo Quioh said he was joining the Unity party with a "solemn" commitment and to help shape the destiny of Liberia to posterity.

He said as Liberians witness the drawing of a new challenge and a new social order which harbors the promise of "hope," the UP-led government of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has clearly given the people of Liberia reason to believe in themselves, their dreams, hope and aspirations.
"We recognized that political pluralism is a fundamental benchmark of democratic institutions. Hence, our action therefore should not be construed as an attempt to undermine the integrity of this old adage; but rather be viewed with the realism that it is not the multiplicity of political parties that matters most, instead, the creation of viable political institutions capable of serving as instruments of constructive dialogue in nation-building," Quioh noted.
According to Mr. Quioh as formal member of the UPP, he has "willingly joined the UP without pre-condition but certainly not to sit at the edge of the clay rather to work and ensure that the aims and objectives of the party are actualized through our collective effort of all partisans while at the same time marking sure of sweeping victory in 2011."

For his part, the first Vice Chairman and now acting Chairman of the UP, Mr. Mambu David, thanked his collogues for the decision to join the UP terming the party as the grass root party.

He said it was satisfactory and rewarding for all politicians with the same ideology to come together under umbrella in moving the country forward.
It can be recalled that the ruling UP has received lot of commendation in recent months with the most recent coming from the Chairman emeritus of the formal ruling National Patriotic Party (NPP) Chief Cyril Allen and Mr. Darius Dillon of the opposition Liberty Party of Cllr. Charles Brumskine.
Prior to the recent crossover several other politicians have given their loyalty to the UP in the warm up to the 2011 elections which political pundits say will be one of the toughest elections in the country's history.

Already dark clouds are hanging over the prospect of the country's second postwar election as members of the National legislature are dragging their feet on the passage of the threshold bill that allocates the number of electoral constituencies in the country.
The National Elections Commission says the delay in passing the bill will pose detrimental effect on 2011.
Despite mounting calls from the international community including g the US government and the UN, civil society organizations and the religious community, the Legislature has given no heed and remains adamant.

While politicians are crossing carpets and political parties forming merger or deciding coalitions, none of them have spoken on the issue, a disappointment to the public.

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