The Unity Party standard bearer Joseph Nyumah Boakai has revealed that he took a stand for peace in 2017 when he decided to concede defeat. He shared that he had received advice from Mr. Benoni Urey, the leader of the All Liberian Party (ALP), to protest against the election results that declared President George Weah the winner.
During his appearance on the Truth FM afternoon phone-in radio program on Monday, the former Vice President informed the public that he firmly held his position of nonviolence, despite Mr. Urey’s suggestion to mobilize 15,000 protesters against the election results.
“Mr. Urey told me that we could put 15,000 people in the streets. However, I wasn’t willing to put people in harm’s way. I couldn’t allow people to die because of me. Believe me, even if I had taken the country at that time, I wouldn’t be alive today.
“I think by now, Liberians are convinced that the decision they made wasn’t the right one, and they are ready to correct it. I felt cheated, I felt there were many violations at that time, but those were the sentiments of the young people.”
Boakai’s comments were made in response to questions from the host about his commitment to ensuring a peaceful electoral process and his statement that “no one man has a monopoly over violence.”
Urey had been a very strong ally of Boakai and supported him in the runoff election in 2017. However, recent strained relationship between the previously formidable pair climaxed in a bitter disagreement regarding the course of their political coalition for the October 10 elections, especially after Boakai picked Nimba County Senator Jeremiah Koung as his running mate. This selection which Urey strongly opposed ultimately shattered the previously unwavering connection they had shared.
At the same time, Boakai recalled that during the 2017 elections, even though Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf whom he served as Vice President had expressed her support for his candidature, did not support him during the elections.
“I was in an election that was not backed by a principal who had praised me all through… but we saw that she was distancing herself from me and we know when the incumbent is not in your favor,” he said.
It can be recalled that during the aftermath of the 2017 elections, the Unity Party expelled Madam Sirleaf whom they accused of meddling in the presidential elections in which Joseph Boakai suffered a bruising defeat.
Madam Sirleaf and other high-ranking members of the party at the time were accused of sabotage.
Promising Liberia Good Leadership
Meanwhile, the UP standard bearer believes that Liberia, as a country with a long history, deserves leadership that can elevate it among other nations. He aspires to bring such leadership to the presidency.
“I am here to provide the kind of leadership that will make our country what it’s meant to be. I believe that if I haven’t done that, I wouldn’t have fulfilled the service God intends for me to provide. I can assure you that my leadership will transform our country into the nation it deserves to be.”
He pledged to lead with honesty and claimed that, unlike many politicians, he has never been associated with misappropriating government funds or engaging in corruption. He emphasized that he has always been blessed.
As President, he expressed his commitment to improving sanitation, making roads accessible for people to travel and conduct business, and enhancing healthcare institutions. He also challenged the incumbent President, George Weah, to participate in a presidential debate on the issues, stating, “I will not attend any debate that doesn’t include Weah.”
Source: Front Page Africa