Margibi County — Margibi County Senator Emmanuel Nuquay has described the rumored senatorial ambition of the former Minister of State for Presidential Affairs Nathaniel McGill as a “stranger on job hunt”, and urged residents of the county to “shine their eyes” ahead of 2023 legislative and presidential elections.
The former Chief-of-Staff to President George Weah, who resigned two weeks ago after he was sanctioned by the US Treasury Department for alleged corruption, is reportedly eyeing the senatorial seat of the county in 2023 after numerous consultations with stakeholders of the county.
Mixed reactions have since trailed Mr. McGill’s alleged senatorial ambition, with many accusing Senator Nuquay of anointing him as his preferred choice.
Clarifying his innocence to residents of the county at a town hall gathering in Kakata over the weekend, Senator Nuquay insisted he has no idea about McGill’s senatorial ambition, saying “I can’t take the Margibi people’s job and give it to a stranger.”
“I have been accused of taking someone (the former Minister of State for Presidential Affairs Nathaniel McGill) from the Belleh Forest to bring him to the Gibi Mountain to take the Margibian (name for residents of the county) children’s job. I want to assure you that the information is untrue. I have no idea about Mr. McGill’s senatorial ambition,” Senator Nuquay said.
Senator Nuquay said he has “no preferred candidate,” and has “anointed no one,” as senatorial candidate in the county.
The Margibi County senator said he had a clear mind and was determined to ensure that “there shall be no imposition of anyone on the county.
“My stance is intended to maintain the relationship he has been able to mend over the years, adding that his support behind specific individuals would disintegrate the unity he enjoys while working with everyone from across the divide,” Senator Nuquay said.
“In no proxy political fight”
Senator Nuquay had made it clear he was not into a proxy political fight with anyone in the county, urging those seeking elective positions in the county to focus on their campaign rather than attacking him.
He noted that people are falling at odds with him for his development initiatives across the county, something they see as factors that would outshine their political relevance to the people.
“There are speculations that I have convinced someone to contest against his wife, which is untrue. The reason why I am being attacked is because I continue to work in the interest of the people who elected me senator,” Nuquay told a group of women in electoral District Three in Margibi County.
“If you’re contesting as representative and senator, continue to run your campaign and forget about using my name. In 2020 when I was contesting as Senator of Margibi County there were people who opposed me, did you hear me complaining? No! I focused on convincing the electorates to vote for me rather than responding to those who were on the radio castigating me.”
Senator Nuquay, who contested as running mate to Unity Party standard bearer Joseph Boakai in 2017 but lost in his native Margibi County seemingly due to perceptions against him that he would witch-hunt leaders of the county when elected vice president, said he doesn’t desire to repeat the instances that led to his dismal failure in the county, saying that doing so would breed disharmony amongst stakeholders and supporters of the county.
Senator Nuquay told residents of Margibi County the process of electing people to various positions in the county in 2023 should be left opened void of his influence so as to allow the electorates make the determination regarding who leads them. “It’s better for the people to decide their leader,” Sen. Nuquay said.
Against this backdrop, the People’s Unification Party (PUP) Senator is encouraging his supporters and friends to decide their leaders ahead of 2023 presidential and legislative elections.
It can be recalled, Senator Nuquay supported several individuals in 2017 for legislative positions in the county, some of whom won and lost. This time, political pundits observed, the PUP lawmaker, once again, many are looking up to him for financial and moral support, something the senator has reportedly reneged on doing.
Has PUP Margibi Chairman Cooper joined CDC?
At an appreciation program organized by students of Margibi County Saturday in honor of Mr. McGill, what became a surprise to many was the enlistment of Francis Cooper, the Margibi County chairman of the PUP, as an “auxiliary of the Congress of Democratic Change”.
Cooper, who has been chairman of the PUP for over two years, shocked many when he joined the parade with students and even made statement of support to McGill’s rumored senatorial ambition.
Cooper’s presence at the program and his enlistment as an “auxiliary of the CDC” has drawn condemnations, with many calling for his resignation from the PUP.
The majority bloc of the PUP National Youth Congress, in a statement, called on Mr. Cooper to his position as chairman of Margibi Chapter if the PUP.
“We think this is the honorable thing to do as his action Saturday undermines his oath of office to protect, defend and uphold the norms of allegiance to the institution he serves as chairman,” the statement added.
The party said Mr. Cooper’s action further undermines the standards of the PUP in an uncalled-for manner. “At this point in the national existence of our body polity, It is counterproductive for a party stalwart to pledge support to another individual of another party,” the party said.
“Predicated upon Mr. Cooper’s action, it is equally fair enough to categorize him as an “extremist and McGill’s operative within the People’s Unification Party”.