12 June 2014

Liberia: 'We Don't Need CDC'

Photo: FrontPage Africa
Benoni Urey, a staunch ally of former president Charles Taylor, campaigns for the opposition Congress for Democratic Change (file photo).

The political marriage between businessman-turned presidential hopeful, Benoni Urey, and the main opposition party Congress for Democratic Change or CDC appears to be falling apart with bitter exchanges from both sides.

In previous comments, the CDC of Ambassador George Weah had raised integrity issues against Mr. Urey, questioning his ties with ex-president Charles Taylor and his (Taylor's) disbanded NPFL rebels. Now a group supporting Urey's presidential ambition has told a NewDawn's interview via mobile that Benoni Urey doesn't need the Congress for Democratic Change to become President of Liberia.

Emmanuel Lomax, Chairman of the "Friends of Urey" declared that the Congress for Democratic Change lacks integrity to make someone President here. Lomax described the CDC as not dependable, indicating that Liberians of all walks of life are supportive of Urey's presidency.

His comments were in response to reports gathered by this paper from individuals claiming to be members of the "Friends of Urey" recently that businessman Benoni Urey was contemplating abandoning his quest for the presidency in 2017 due to lack of support from the hierarchy of the CDC.

According to the reports, the decision may have arose out of a communication from the CDC a few months ago, warning the "Friends of Urey" against using the party to solicit nationwide support, spearheaded by Mr. Emmanuel Lomax. The reports also attributed Mr. Urey's purported decision to back-off from the presidential race to an alleged United States' travel sanctions on him.

The reports said, Urey, a former stalwart of Taylor's ex-ruling National Patriotic Party or NPP and current member of the CDC, has allegedly scaled down his nationwide activities and those of the "Friends of Urey" headed by Emmanuel Lomax.

But Lomax rubbishes these reports, describing it as nonsense that needs no credence. Speaking to The NewDawn via mobile Thursday, June 11, 2014, he said it is not to his knowledge if Mr. Urey's name is on any US travel sanction list. Mr. Benoni Urey was among a group of Taylor's confidants, whose names were removed from a UN travel ban some time ago.

Lomax however disclosed that he and Mr. Urey are preparing for a visit to the US in September to hold talks with Urey's supporters in America on his desire to contest for the presidency of Liberia.

Lomax maintained Benoni Urey has gotten the blessing of the Liberian people, and as such,"No one is going to stand in Mr. Urey's way; we don't need the CDC as it is being reported that Urey want to back off because he does not have CDC support; it is a lie from hell; We don't need CDC to make Urey President for Liberia," he argued.

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