The Golamai Development Association of Zorzor District, the Zevelekezee Association of Voinjama and the Foya Citizens Association for Development (FOCAD) have expressed support for the presidential candidacy of the standard bearer of the Movement for Economic Empowerment, Dr. J. Mills Jones.
Representatives of the three organizations made the declaration when Dr. Jones honored their invitations to visit their respective communities in Lofa County. The three groups are involved in economic and self-help initiatives and benefitted from Dr. Jones' financial inclusion policy as Executive Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia.
After Zevelekezee gowned Dr. Jones, a representative commended him for his numerous contributions to the people of Lofa and indicated that his presence has reawakened their spirit to support his desire to participate in this year's presidential elections.
On behalf of her members, the association's president, Madam Deddeh Korti, said they support Dr. Jones and will work to ensure that he becomes the next President of Liberia.
"We have been waiting to see and hear from you, Dr. Jones, our 'Poverty Doctor," she said.
"For us, we remain committed and supportive of you becoming our next President."
Responding, Dr. Jones said he was grateful for the warm reception by the people of Voinjama. "We know the people of Lofa are hard-working and appreciative of the good work of public servants. With this show of support and solidarity, I assure you that I remain a strong candidate in the elections."
On his arrival in Foya, Dr. Jones was received by throngs of supporters who turned out to give him a rousing welcome. There was also a street parade that ended up with an indoor program at the Tamba Lamine Taylor Council Hall in Foya City. Foya citizens made several presentations of gifts to Dr. Jones and assured him of their support in the October presidential election. He was gowned and presented with certificates.
Ma Kumba Ngateh, on behalf of Foya women and through an interpreter, said Dr. Jones deserves their support as his work to empower Liberians has never been tribal or discriminatory. Also presenting a cow on behalf of the people and supporters of Dr. Jones in Foya, former Commissioner William Tamba Kamba said the people of Foya will forever remain grateful and supportive of Dr. Jones for his imaginative financial inclusion policy that has helped many citizens across the country.
Mr. Kamba said a cow as a gift in Lofa tradition is one of the highest honors bestowed on individuals who have contributed to society and the welfare of humanity. "With these presentations of gifts, we commit ourselves to support your presidential bid," he said.
Receiving the gifts, Dr. Jones said the development of Liberia is a collective responsibility beyond tribal and sectional lines. "Poverty does not know tribal affiliation; it affects everyone, irrespective of your tribe and locality," Dr. Jones Said. "Your open declaration to support me from this part of Liberia has renewed my spirit that indeed we are ready for change, and I will not let you down."
Before Dr. Jones' visit to Lofa, it was widely speculated that Lofa County had been secured by the Unity Party as their stronghold. But with support for Dr. Jones from these three renowned organizations, especially from Foya District, the notion about UP locking up Lofa solidarity for its presidential candidate is being tested, according to political pundits.