Liberia: Disagreement Swells in Unity Party

Discontent, disagreement, protest, and uneasy calm pervades the ruling Unity Party over jobs and appointments by President Joseph Nyumah Boakai as he formed his government to govern the state.

The glaring dissatisfaction is coming from both within the Unity Party itself and the UP Alliance, particularly the Movement for Democracy and Reconstruction of Senator Prince Yormie Johnson that produced Mr. Boakai’s Vice President Jeremiah Kpan Koung.

Both men, Sen. Johnson and Vice President Koung hail from vote-rich Nimba County. They led the county to overwhelmingly vote for the Rescue Ticket of the Unity Party with Boakai and Koung as Standard Bearer and Vice Standard Bearer.

Now it appears that the dividends of the marriage are not being distributed as expected, with Senator Johnson physically upset. Besides, President Boakai’s recent pronouncement at his inauguration to set up a special office on war and economic crimes court is piercing PYJ, who thinks the President is touching a grey area that should not be talked about at all.

He was very emphatic at his church on Sunday, 4th February that Nimba County deserves six to seven cabinet posts because it went all out and voted the Boakai-Koung Ticket overwhelmingly.

Attempt by the President Boakai to appoint an executive of the MDR, Cllr. Cooper Kruah, as Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Republic, is being stalled by the nominee’s private activity with a private company that borders on money, which the latter claims hasn’t paid in full, bringing about integrity issues.

On the other hand, Unity Party partisans think they are being relegated in the job distribution exercise, with President Boakai nominating more outsiders to lucrative positions who, they argue, did not go into trenches and villages to solicit citizens’ votes.

They engulfed National Chairman Rev. Dr. Luther Tarpeh recently and expressed their dissatisfaction, but the Chairman directed them to instead, take their grievance to the President’s Rehab residence in Paynesville – the place of action, where appointments are being made.

These uproars have slowed pace of the formation of the new government, creating a tense atmosphere saturated with uncertainty and speculations something that should be of a party that governed for 12 years before returning to power.

What seems unclear, however, is whether President Boakai is listening to these early outcries from within and outside the UP that we believe if not addressed head-on, could haunt the administration for a very long time and perhaps set the stage for disintegration.

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