12 December 2017

Liberia: Liberty Party Former Chairman Fonati Koffa Endorses George Weah's Presidential Candidacy

Monrovia — While the Liberty Party remains indecisive on which side to lean towards as the country looks forward to a runoff election, some of its high profile members are endorsing the presidential candidacy of Senator George Weah and the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) one after the other.

A fortnight ago, Israel Akinsanya, a former chairman of the Liberty Party (LP), joined the CDC and promised to use his resources to ensure Senator Weah's victory.

Maxwell Grigsby, a defeated representative aspirant on the ticket of the Liberty Party, joined the CDC during the same period.

Kanio Bai Gbala is a prodigal son to the CDC after leaving for the LP.

On Sunday, Rep. Richmond Anderson of the Liberty Party, who wasn't reelected in the October 10 elections, officially joined the CDC.

On Monday, Cllr. J. Fonati Koffa, former Chairman of the LP announced his endorsement of Senator Weah on Voice of Grand Kru.

Speaking on the county's radio, Cllr. Koffa said, "I am endorsing the candidacy of Senator George Weah as in the best interest of my district, my county and the nation."

"I am announcing my impending arrival in the county for this purpose and I have instructed my campaign machinery to begin mobilization for a massive get out to vote effort in Grand Kru".

Cllr. Koffa, in a separate interview with FrontPageAfrica, said he believes that Senator Weah and the CDC's agenda offers the best hope for the people in his district in Grand Kru County and Southeastern Liberia, which is the most economically depressed part of the country.

"I am convinced that the infrastructure development in the Southeast, which I prioritize is more likely to be fulfilled under Senator Weah, notwithstanding my admiration and respect for the Vice President," he said.

Koffa won the Grand Kru District 1 legislative seat in the October 10 elections, making him one of only two lawmakers elected on the ticket of the Liberty Party.

In the wake of the electoral fraud case initiated by the Liberty Party against the National Elections Commission (NEC) and the intervention of the ruling Unity Party, many had expected that these senior partisans of the LP would have thrown its weight behind the ruling party in the runoff.

Speaking on the issue, Cllr. Koffa, said as a party of credibility, he expects the Liberty Party to support the CDC in the runoff in the spirit of the Ganta Declaration.

"LP is a party of credibility. Before the elections, LP signed what is famously called the Ganta Declaration, committing to opposition solidarity."

"There is no reason for me to believe it will act contrary to its word. My advance enforcement was to get my campaign machinery prepared," he said.

FKoffa resigned his chairmanship of the LP after he was nominated by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as Special Prosecutor (Head of the Special Presidential Task force) and Minister of State without Portfolio.

He led the prosecution of bribery suspects including the former Chairman of the ruling Unity Party, Cllr. Varney Sherman, former Speaker of the House of Representatives, J. Alex Tyler, who is now a stalwart of the CDC, amongst a host of former government officials.

In a FrontPageAfrica interview on Sunday, the standard bearer of the Liberty Party, Cllr. Charles Walker Brumskine, said the LP would officially make known its side when the time is appropriate.

"I am sure when a decision is made, party officials will inform the press," he said.

But welcoming Cllr. Koffa's decision to endorse Senator Weah, the CDC Secretary General, Janga Kowo, said Cllr. Koffa's endorsement would go a long way in consolidating a national consensus for Senator Weah's presidency.

Kowo confirmed to FrontPageAfrica that the CDC has been in talks with the Liberty Party hoping that it would endorse the CDC in spirit of opposition solidarity.

"We hope they will make a decision soon; I do not have the liberty to disclose the details of some of the discussions, but we are very hopeful, we are very optimistic that eventually the Liberty Party will endorse the opposition CDC in the spirit of opposition victory and in the spirit of the Ganta Declaration," he said.

However, Abraham Darius Dillon, the vice president for Political Affairs of the Liberty Party Monday posted a photo of him and Vice President Joseph Boakai bragging that he and Vice President Joseph Boakai, who is also the standard bearer of the Unity Party held discussion. He, however, did not disclose the content of the discussion.

When contacted concerning the photo on social media, Dillon informed FPA that the Liberty Party is in negotiation with both parties and has not made commitment to any side yet.


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