The opposition Collaborating Political Party (CPP) says while the group notes the recognizance of the increasing violent acts arising from the recent by-elections in Montserrado County by the UN and the Special representative of ECOWAS, particularly the violence that occurred on Saturday, 17 August in District #15, the CPP said the joint statement of the two partners rather did not recognize the spate of the deliberate and unprovoked assault and aggression inspired and proceeding from the CDC Standard Bearer, President George Weah, against the CPP Candidate Telia Urey of District #15 at the launch of the ruling party’s Campaign.
A press statement issues August 21 says the Collaborating Political Parties comprising of the All Liberia Party (ALP), the Unity Party (UP), the Liberty Party (LP), and the(ANC) said it is seized of a copy of the Joint Statement By The UN-Liberia and the ECOWAS Commission Representative in the country on recent electoral violence in Montserrado County, and wish to respond as follow that the two bodies the UN and ECOWAS Special Representative, being fully abreast of the incidence of willful and brutal attacks against the Members of the CPP, all under the watchful eyes of the Liberia National Police, ignored in their joint statement, the registered complaints to the NEC and the Ministry of Justice and copied to the United Nations, ECOWAS Special Representative, EU, US Embassy by the CPP Candidate.
Of particular concern, the CPP said, is the insinuation that these acts are said to be perpetrated by parties to include CPP supporters, and not as they were flagrantly perpetrated and carried out by CDC hooligans.
“We wish to state emphatically that these waves of violent attacks against members of the Collaborating Political Parties are not only well planned and executed, but they are also state sponsored,” the main opposition bloc said, which the CPP said accounts for the facilitating role of the Liberia National Police and other state security actors regarding these attacks. “Coupled with this, is the conspicuous silence of President Weah,” the CPP statement said.
“The assassination attempt on the life of Candidate Telia Urey and her supporters,” the CPP said, “occurred in the presence of members of the Liberia National Police who stood idly by and witnessed CDC thugs carry out mayhem against our supporters”.
The Opposition bloc said the call by President Weah for a cosmetic or symbolic dialogue with Candidate Telia Urey is unrealistic because he has proven to be the instigator to the ongoing conflict.
“We are therefore taken aback that such a hypocritical gesture by President Weah is hailed as any genuine intervention aimed at arresting the Saturday’s incidence. The Government of Liberia simply allowed the CDC’s attack to reach its finality. To date, no arrest has been made,” the mainstream opposition said.
The CPP emphatically clarify that violent attacks and assassination attempt on the life of Candidate Telia Urey have rendered her disadvantaged and created an unleveled playing field in the electoral process in District #15.
“We urge the United Nations and the Economic Community of West African States – ECOWAS to be alert to these early warning signs of renewed conflict occasioned by state sponsored acts of violence and abuse of human rights in Liberia, where the International Community has invested so much for peace and stability over the decade,” the statement asserted.
The CPP called on the United Nations, AU, EU, ECOWAS, and the larger International Community to probe these acts of state sponsored domestic terrorism by the Weah-led Administration,” the statement signed by the Unity Party, the Liberty Party, the Alternative National Congress and All Liberian Party said.
Recently, the EU Delegation and the Embassies of the United States of America and the EU Member States (France, Germany, Ireland, Sweden and the United Kingdom) in Monrovia expressed concerned about recent incidents of violence after the by-elections in Montserrado County. We condemn the violence that took place on Saturday, 17 August, between supporters of the Coalition for Democratic Change and supporters of the opposition Collaborating Political Parties, including the reported violent attacks against the opposition candidate in the District #15 Representative by-election.
The two international partners said following the recent decision by the National Election Commission’s Hearing Officer to re-run the Montserrado County District #15 Representative by-election in 20 polling stations, we urge all Liberians, and in particular all political parties, both their leaders and their supporters, to ensure a peaceful completion of the electoral process, and to refrain from any inflammatory statements or acts of aggression, intimidation or violence. We emphasize the importance of upholding the rule of law and contributing to a climate of tolerance, mutual respect and peaceful debate.
The dual call on all Liberians, and in particular political leaders and citizens conveying messages in traditional and social media, to avoid using hate speech which could further enhance tensions and undermine the peace and stability of the country.
“We urge the Liberian authorities to complete a swift and objective investigation to hold accountable those instigating or executing violence in this and previous incidents. In this regard, we welcome the statement by the President of the Republic of Liberia H.E. Dr. George Manneh Weah on Sunday, 18 August, which rejected electoral violence and announced a thorough and expeditious investigation into the events which occurred on Saturday,” the EU and ECOWAS said
They commended and supported the statements and efforts of Liberian political and civil society actors to foster peace and stability in the country. We also welcome the joint statement by the United Nations and the Office of the Special Representative of the ECOWAS Commission in Liberia on 19 August, which also deplored the recent electoral violence.
They said Liberia has gone a long way in consolidating democracy, peace and stability since the end of the conflict in 2003; and Liberians should not let any form of political or electoral violence jeopardize or reverse the progress made. We express our confidence that the Liberian people will always protect their country’s hard-won peace and stability. We remain fully committed to continuing to support Liberia’s development and peacebuilding efforts.