Janjay, District Two — Bong County Senator, Prince Moye, who had agreed to support Joshua Better, the candidate of the opposition Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) in the pending by-election in Bong's District Two, has now withdrawn his support and aligned himself with Independent candidate, Edward Gboe.
Sen. Moye, of the CPP, made the decision known at separate programs he organized with his supporters in Gbarnga and Janjay.
Sen. Moye's decision may have been informed by his former chief of office staff's reported lack of support in the district after several opinion polls conducted by the media and pro-democracy groups placed Better fourth in the pecking order of leading candidates in the race.
In those opinion polls, James Kolleh of the People's Unification Party (PUP) has been rated the favorite, followed by Melvin Savage, the candidate of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) and Gboe. James Mulbah Totaye, an independent candidate and Matthew Siakor are also among those considered, according to the polls.
A source close to Sen. Moye informed FrontPageAfrica that the district's former lawmaker, who won as senator in last year's senatorial elections, is keen on finding a successor in an election that has turned out to be a proxy political fight between he (Moye), Vice President Jewel Howard-Taylor, who supports Savage and District Five lawmaker Edward Karfiah, the sponsor of Kolleh.
"Sen. Moye knows that Joshua Better can't win the by-election and that's why he has declared support for Gboe. Senator Moye wants to maintain his influence in the district," the source said.
Meanwhile, supporters of Better have strongly condemned the endorsement of Gboe by Sen. Moye, calling the endorsement nothing but a mockery of their long-standing relationship.
Jerry Forkpa, a supporter of Better, said the endorsement came at a great price to supporters of Better, considering the obvious "big and small brother" relationship that had existed between Sen. Moye and Better.
Forkpa said the parody of the endorsement exposes the shameless hypocrisy of the senator, who has always shown deception in his political endeavors.
"While endorsements are part and parcel of democracy, they are never done to the exclusion of other candidates. This is simply not democratic. Why did Sen. Moye allow Better to contest if he knew he wasn't a winnable candidate? Why did he allow him part ways with the PUP and join the CPP when he (Moye) knew he wasn't going to support Better. This is betrayal at its highest level and it should be condemned to the highest level," he says.
Forkpa said some supporters of Better are considering supporting Kolleh to ensure Sen. Moye's preferred candidate doesn't win the by-election. "Supporting Kolleh is the only alternative for some of us who are disenchanted by Sen. Moye's decision to support Gboe. If we losing we should lose with Moye," he says.
Sen. Moye's open declaration of support for Gboe comes as a blow to Jefferson Blackie of the Rainbow Coalition Party. At an elaborate program in 2011, Blackie surrounded his political ambition to Sen. Moye with an agreement that he would have been chosen as Moye's successor during the end of the former lawmaker's two-term as representative.