Liberia: Dillon Increases War Drum Volume

Montserrado County Senator Abraham Darius Dillon on Wednesday increased the volume of his war drum, saying that President George Manneh Weah will not end his tenure if he tempers with the will of the people on December 8, 2020.

Liberians are expected to head for the poll on December 8 in a midterm senatorial election that will also see the country voting in a referendum.

But there are fears from the camp of the opposition that there are plans by the ruling party to rig the elections. "We know what tempering with elections have caused us," Dillon told a group of religious leaders who had gone to seek clarity on the Senator's statement about the President's tenure in office being cut short if the election is temper with.

He maintains that if the President wants to go against the people's will on elections' day and rig the poll, then Mr. Weah himself, will not end his tenure. The religious leaders have viewed the statement as undermining the peace of the country. However, they failed to seek similar clarity during the regime of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf when current Minister of State Nathaniel McGill, Representative Acrous Gray and current ruling party Chairman made similar threats.

Meanwhile, when the delegation of the Inter- Religious Council of Liberia met with Dillon at his office on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, he was blunt and reiterated his warning. The delegation had gone to seek clarity from Dillon for his earlier threat that President Weah's tenure would end abruptly, if he tempered with the impending poll results.

The President of the Liberia Council of Churches Bishop Kortu Brown said, the comment needed clarification for the sake of peace and national stability. The LCC is a constituent member of the Inter-Religious Council of Liberia, which comprises the National Muslim Council and other faith-based organizations.

According to Sen. Dillon, since his election as Senator of Montserrado, President George Weah and members of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change have vowed to reclaim the seat at all cost, something, Dillon describes as being problematic.

Since 2005, Montserrado County has been stronghold of Mr. Weah's Congress for Democratic Change, but the ruling Coalition lost one of the county's senatorial seats in 2019 to Dillon, an opposition. He alleges that the Minister of State Nathaniel McGill, has said the ruling establishment will not sit and allow him (Dillon) to win the senatorial seat again.

"Winning the seat is not an allowance, it is the decision of the people", Dillon notes, and adds that the Superintendent of Maryland County George A. Prowd has said that the ruling CDC is not just a party, it is the government.

According to Dillon, the statement could be interpreted that the CDC has control over the army, police and all state security apparatuses and could use them to its advantage, citing electoral violence that took place in Montserrado County District# 13 and District# 15 respectively in 2019, noting that there was not one police report of those who were found liable.

He argues further that President Weah has broken the Code of Conduct for public officials just to get him (Dillon) out of the Montserrado seat, adding that the President has his ministers in the streets, campaigning in violation of the laws.

He notes that the one seat is not the reason the country is retrogressing, pointing that children are being raped daily and it doesn't concern the President and his officials, while corruption is the order of the day with stance taken by the government.

He informs the religious leaders that OK FM media outlet and other media institutions reported that Senator Saah Joseph of Montserrado and others met with ex-rebels with him (Dillon) being targeted and center for discussion, but didn't see or hear anything from the Inter-Religious Council.

Members of the Inter-Religious Council that met with Senator Dillon include Bishop D. Jensen Seyenkulo of the Lutheran Church in Liberia, who is also first vice president of the Liberia Council of Churches, Dr. Olu Menjay, President of the Liberia Baptist Convention and second vice president of the LCC, and Atty. Shiek Musa Mohammed Bamah, secretary of the IRC, amongst others.

Responding, Bishop Seyenkulo discloses the delegation will meet with various government officials to give pieces of advice for the right things to be done and for peace to reign in the country. "Those who think we are fussing with you, we are not fussing with you, we are your brothers and sisters and we want to work with you. We didn't single you out, we are meeting with other officials", Bishop Seyenkulo tells Senator Dillon.

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