-Dillon Laments Amidst Mounting Lapses; Violation Of The Constitution Coupled With Unexplained Overnight Accumulation Of Wealth
The Vice Chairman for Political Affairs for the opposition Liberty Party (LP), Mr. Abraham D. Dillon has expressed that President George M. Weah is not God rather the worse person to enter the Executive Mansion.
Dillon also alleged that President Weah did not speak the truth to the Liberian people when he said that he was used his own money to re-roof homes in Gibraltar; a slum community in Monrovia instead of using the government’s (taxpayers’) to bankroll to project of which he claimed credit for.
The opposition vice chairman for political affairs said in a year’s time, the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) headed by Dr. Weah have been swallowed by a heap of constitutional breach; accumulation of overnight massive and questionable wealth by him and some of his officials; inability to resuscitate the badly ailing economy; and as acute ‘Yarkpa’ (debilitating hunger) continues to debase the dignity of millions of Liberians who cannot find let alone afford a daily meal while the ruling elite and their likes without remorse keep cruising in maximum luxury in the country plagued with tough time and hardship for the ordinary citizens; as the terrifying alleged missing L$16bn saga including the controversial US$25m mop-up scheme to rescue the suffering Liberian dollars on the foreign exchange market yet unattended to, just to name a few, might soon become fairy tale.
Speaking as guest of a talk show host of one of the local radio stations in Monrovia on December 23, 2018, Dillon further noted that if Weah did not know anything about the reported missing L$16bn and containers under his administration, his posture would have changed like Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and the Sable Mining Scandal.
Meanwhile, a former student leader of the University of Liberia during the ‘80s, Alaric Tokpa has described the Coalition of Democratic Change- led government under the leadership of President George Weah as a ‘paper tiger’.
Speaking on Thursday, January 17, 1029 he appeared on a local radio talk show, the Okay Afternoon Conversation, aired on Okay 99.5 in Monrovia, Professor Tokpa said that if he were inciting violence within the student community, this government would have been out of here long ago.
“If I were inciting violence on the campuses of the University of Liberia this government will be running away now, I can assure you because this government is a paper tiger,” Professor Tokpa said.
The former University Professor indicated that he has on many occasions been engaged to advice youth and students’ leaders that feel threatened by the government and would want to flee the country, but was quick to note they should not but stay, and face the struggle, thus it is the will of a democratic struggle that succeeds and more effectively.
Tokpa stated that the if any sector or side in that country that is to leave should be the government itself because according to him, the CDC- led government has underperformed in its first year.
“If any side or sector in this business that should leave it is the government, because it has underperformed so much so that the expectation of our people and the disappointment of our people are so great, because disappointment is as a result of expectation, but for those who did not expect the government to perform they are leaving with the reality,” Professor Tokpa noted.
At the same time, Professor Tokpa stated that he does not in any way think that this government would perform any better in the coming years, adding he hopes the government can prove him wrong.
He asserted that he hopes that this government can perform, noting that within the space of just one year there has been so much claims and counter claims over missing billion Liberian banknotes and the twenty-five million infuse into the Liberian economy.
The UL Professor voiced that what happened in Liberia with regards to the missing 16billion Liberian banknotes cannot be tolerated in other African countries or the world at large.
You see the amassing wealth all around here, you see the way the President is constructing for himself and not paying attention to the society clearly tells you that something went wrong,” Professor Tokpa said.
At the same time, the Association of Liberian Journalists in the Americas (ALJA) says its attention has been drawn to media reports regarding the fast pace at which Liberia’s President, Dr. George Manneh Weah, is accumulating material wealth, mainly real estates in the country since his ascendency to the nation’s presidency nearly a year ago.
ALJA says in a country where majority of the citizens barely survive on less than one US dollar a day coupled with the lack of social services as a result of economic hardship, it is deeply troubled by the speed at which President Weah and some members of his inner circle are amassing costly real estates.
According to an ALJA press release issued on January 15, 2019, the Association quoting media reports cited the 46-unit building complex being constructed on the Robertsfield Highway in Margibi County by President Weah and his US$150,000 house, which is being rebuilt in Sinkor, Montserrado County, as some of the properties that are raising doubts among Liberians at home and abroad about Mr. Weah’s overnight material wealth. The President demolished the house early last year after winning the presidency.
In addition to the cited real estates, ALJA says the Liberian leader is brazenly engaged in other private construction projects in the country while information about his wealth prior to ascending to the presidency remains a secret.
The Association says it acknowledges that President Weah, as former Senator of Montserrado County earned thousands of US dollars; and as ex-soccer celebrity, he also, reportedly made millions of US dollars while playing football abroad, but the Association says it is apprehensive about the timing of the costly projects he is now undertaking in the country. ALJA maintained when President Weah played football and served as senator, he neither build a village nor amass real estate at the pace at which he is now doing.
The Association noted he is the only Liberian leader in recent history of the country, who is reported to have built a housing complex in less than one year following his inauguration.
ALJA says the President and his cronies in government have the moral and legal obligations to provide an explanation to Liberians and the international community as to how their massive real estate projects are being financed in the wake of the missing 16 billion Liberian dollars scandal and the unaccounted for US$25 million dollars, which the Coalition for Democratic Change(CDC) led government claimed to have infused into the Liberian economy for the mop-up of excess Liberian dollars from the market in the year 2018.
ALJA recalled that on January 22, 2018, when Mr. Weah was inaugurated as Liberia’s 25th democratically elected president, he vowed to rid the public sector of malfeasance, mainly shady deals. Then he pronounced “As officials of Government, it is time to put the interest of our people above our own selfish interests. It is time to be honest with our people. Though corruption is a habit among our people, we must end it. We must pay civil servants a living wage, so that corruption is not an excuse for taking what is not theirs. Those who do not refrain from enriching themselves at the expense of the people — the law will take its course. I say today that you will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”
ALJA asserts if the President’s professed war on corruption and other forms of bad governance in Liberia is to be taken seriously, then he must lead by example. “Anything other than that would equate to hypocrisy,” the ALJA National President, Moses D. Sandy, declared in the press release.
ALJA said after Mr. Weah and the CDC ascended to the political leadership of Liberia, they branded their administration as people’s centered. Then the President said “I declare publicly that my singular but very important mission in seeking the presidency is positively impacting the lives of grass rooters who are popularly known as the masses”.
But in less than a year of political leadership under the CDC-led government, the country’s economy remains in dire straits and the masses continue to experience significant economic challenges. ALJA urged the administration to adhere to the rule of law and the principles of accountability and transparency in the public.
Moreover, on Friday, January 11, 2019 a UL release signed by its Vice President for UL Relations, Atty. Norris Tweah, announced the ban on student’s politics on its campuses and that no political group shall assemble or hold meetings or engage in any political-related activities on any of the University of Liberia campuses during this period of suspension.
The release further said the suspension affects political/solidarity marches, political gatherings, the wearing of symbols and emblems depicting and promoting campus-based political groups and student protests.
“Any student who is involved in any activity that disrupts normal university activity shall be expelled,” the release warned.
Then on Wednesday, January 16, 2019, members of the Student Unification Party (SUP) were dressed up in their regular khakie regalia parading the main campus of the University of Liberia on Capitol Hill.
Following their parade, the students then issued a statement denouncing the ban on student political activities by the university and called on the UL authorities to immediately revoke the pronouncement.
“With outright discontent and disillusionment, SUP vehemently cautions and calls on authorities of UL to immediately reverse or revoke its unlawful decision to suspend political activities at the state-run University of Liberia,” SUP noted in its statement
SUP indicated in its statement that the move by the university to suspend student politics is not only a rush, unwarranted and ill-informed decision, but also crackdown
SUP asserted that this move by the UL was allegedly influenced by the national government of Liberia under the Coalition of Democratic Change (CDC) headed by President George Manneh Weah.
The campus-based political movement indicated that Liberia’s striving democracy is under complete attack and those democratic gains so far are fast diminishing under President Weah, thus, accusing him of violating the Constitution of Liberia within one year.TNR