19 February 2013

Liberia: Ellen Under Pressure

The Unity Party Youth Congress for Montserrado County has declared a vote of no confidence in President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf for what it termed her government's inability to fight corruption, lack of transparency and making unilateral decisions.

Addressing a news conference on Monday in Monrovia, the Montserrado County Youth Congress said it no longer has confidence in the standard bearer for her non-cooperative posture, calling the Liberian leader a unilateral President, who continues to ignore the doctrine of party-government relationship.

The Secretary General of the Montserrado Youth Congress Henry Yanquoi, who read the statement, said the fight against corruption, which is paramount on the UP's platform, has become a mere paper tiger rather than an achievable reality.

Yanquoi also accused the President of being extremely insensitive to domestic political and economic realities when she avoided commenting on the oil and gas sector of Liberia in her state of the nation address last month to members of the Liberian Legislature, which he described as a disservice to the people.

"This government is no longer a UP-led government; we believe it is an Ellen-led government because she is doing her own thing outside the party platform," he further charged. According to the Youth Congress, the government's promise to create 20, 000 annually is questionable almost to every Liberian.

Yanquoi said little is being done by the President to realize her job creation strategy thereby, leaving thousands of Liberians jobless, adding "We are encouraging the President to attach sincerity and commitment to jobs creation, if she must succeed."

The Secretary General of the ruling Unity Party Wilmot Paye, told The NewDawn via mobile that he could not respond to the statement from the Youth Congress of Montserrado until he convenes a meeting with them.

Also Presidential Press Secretary Jerolinmick Piah he couldn't comment to something he himself has not heard from the Montserrado Youth Congress, which is comprised of the 17 electoral districts in the county.

In less than a week, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has received two stinking attacks both from outside and within her own governing Unity Party, accusing the administration of among others, lack of transparency, unilaterally making decisions that affect the country, nepotism and the political will to fight corruption.

Last year, a group of jobless UP partisans carrying placards converged at Madam Sirleaf's residence near the Old Road, and similarly expressed a vote of no confidence in her leadership.

Over the weekend, the main opposition party here, Congress for Democratic Change or CDC warned that the ongoing constitutional and electoral laws reform by the government may fail if some key factors are not addressed.

Addressing a press conference at the CDC Headquarters in Monrovia, its Secretary General Nathaniel McGill, said the reform process may fail in the absence of strategic and coordinated implementation framework as well as public participation.

He then called on President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf to consult with relevant state actors to lend credibility to, and promote collective ownership of, the electoral law reform process, since any newly appointed NEC Commissioners may influence the course of electoral reforms, stressing that if much time is involved then the greater public will debate and make their input to the process.

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