19 May 2017

Liberia: Jones Will Be On the Ballot

It appears that the party of former Central Bank Governor, Dr. J. Mills Jones, is not relenting at all, despite a recent Supreme Court ruling that bars the former CBL governor from contesting in the 2017 presidential election.

Officials of his party, the Movement for Economic Empowerment or MOVEE says he will contest despite the ban.Party Chairman, Dee Maxwell SaaKemayah insists in an interview with this paper that Dr. Jones will be on the ballot paper for the Presidency comes October to the dismay of many detractors.

Section 5.1 and 2 of the Code of Conduct bar officials of government, who did not resign within two or three years as inscribed in the Code of Conduct prior to election's year.

But Kamayan on Thursday, 18 May via mobile phone in Monrovia, said Liberians and opposition who do not want to see Dr. Joseph Mills Jones on the ballot, will be disappointed, as he (Jones) will be on the ballot paper.

He claims since the Supreme Court's ruling on the Code Conduct, officials of government have developed the habit of grossly violating the law on a daily basis.He pointed to last weeks' endorsement of Vice President Joseph Boakai by 19 senators on the grounds of the Capitol Building as a clear violation of the Code of Conduct, adding that some officials used their government assigned vehicles to troop to Gbarnga, Bong County to attend another endorsement ceremony of the Vice President, who is Standard Bearer of the ruling Unity Party.

Sounding very bitter on the phone, Kemayah pointed out that adherence to the Code of Conduct is collectively binding on all Liberians, including government officials.

He says it is embarrassing and unfortunate that persons, who see Dr. Jones as a potential threat against their presidential quest, are the ones spewing falsehood and misinterpretation of the Code of Conduct to match or fit their political taste.

Kemayah, reveals that three senior officials of government, who also hold key positions in the ruling Unity Party, are still enjoying their ministerial posts despite the ruling from the high court. He names the Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Lenn Eugene Nagbe, Labour Minister Atty. NetoZarzarLighe, and Deputy Director General, Cole Bangalu, as those who are breaching the Code of Conduct.

He maintains that Dr. Jones is a law-bidding citizen and will never participate in anything that would thwart the laws of the land.His reaction comes in the wake of speculations that Cllr. Charles Brumskine of the Liberty Party is in talk with Dr. Jones' MOVEE for a possible coalition. The deal will see Dr. Jones taking his MOVEE to the grounds of the Liberty Party.

The deal is expected to see the MOVEE standard bearer taking a back seat, relinquishing his presidential bid, but his senior officials will play pivotal role in the elections through the Liberty Party.

Already, it is being speculated that Dr. Jones and Cllr. Brumskine are reportedly in direct talks on the planned marriage.But Kemayah dismisses the report as mere falsehood and calculations from detractors, who are using every available opportunity to create a cloud over Dr. Jones' presidential bid.

He discloses that MOVEE is about to conduct primaries for aspirants vying for legislative seats, commencing May 23 to the June 15, across the country.

By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor-Editing by Jonathan Browne

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