The rancorous outcome of the September 6, 2020 special convention in Sanniquellie, Nimba County, which saw former Nimba County Superintendent Edith Gongloe-Weh being declared the winner amid a process fraught with violence, now seems to be water under the bridge, with the Alternative National Congress political leader Alexander Cummings finally endorsing Mrs. Gongloe-Weh as the unanimous choice of the Collaborating Political Parties to contest the Nimba County seat in the ensuing midterm senatorial elections. Expectedly, Mr. Cummings’ public endorsement of Mrs. Gongloe-Weh has now opened a floodgate of commendations from the general public and some stalwarts of the CPP, all thanking the CPP Political Leader for his statesmanlike posture after having earlier denounced the results of the special convention due to its violent outcome.
In a very exuberant mood that seemed quite uncharacteristic of the usually diplomatic River Gee lawmaker, Senator Conmany B. Wesseh wasted no time in proffering his appreciation for Mr. Cummings’ endorsement of Madam Gongloe-Weh.
“Thank you, ABC!!!!!!!! You are a MAN! Thank God for the wise, selfless and far-reaching decision in the interest of our people. By HIS grace, you’ll be rewarded appropriately. I want to thank Taa Wongbe for the huge courage to compromise for peace and unity. Chairman Naatehn and the entire leadership of the ANC deserve special THANKS for the understanding, foresight and commitment to the CPP, the real hope of the Liberian people. Together, we must ensure a mighty victory for Edith Gongloe for the Senate in Nimba County and victory for all other CPP candidates throughout Liberia. Thanks to all leaders of the CPP for peace and unity. May the good Lord bless us all and save the CPP and our country,” Senator Wesseh enthused following Mr. Cummings’ public endorsement of Mrs. Gongloe-Weh on September 19.
In similar warm fashion, the Political Leader of the Liberty Party, Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence, showered praises on the ANC political leader and current chairperson of the CPP, Mr. Alexander B. Cummings, as well the ANC leadership for their endorsement of Mrs. Gonglo-Weh of the Liberty Party to be the CPP senatorial candidate for Nimba County in the upcoming midterm elections.
“We also thank the Political Leaders and the leaderships of the Unity Party (UP) and the All Liberian Party (ALP) for the support extended to the aspirant of the Liberty Party during the Nimba Primary, and in its aftermath. The conduct of the Nimba Primary, the first by the CPP, provided an opportunity to learn, and tested our resolve to work collaboratively together in the best interests of our people,” Senator Lawrence noted.
The Grand Bassa County lawmaker stated further that although the Nimba Primary was not without its challenges, in the end, “we feel that the CPP is better and stronger because of the experience.”
“The Liberty Party joins all of the constituent parties of the CPP in strongly condemning the violence which characterized the Primary and says that such actions are counterproductive to our collaborative efforts, and have no place in the works of the CPP,” Senator Lawrence affirmed, further congratulating Mrs. Edith Gonglo-Weh, Mr. Taa Wongbe and the great people of Nimba County for putting themselves forward and working with the CPP through the difficulties.
“We believe that the people of Nimba desire that we unite and work together to provide them the quality of leadership that their county deserves. Together, we are stronger. May God continue to guide the works of the CPP and keep us united in our pursuits of the best interests of our country and our people,” Madam Lawrence stated.
The strong words of commendation from the CPP stalwarts come against the background of the issuance of a special statement by Mr. Cummings on developments surrounding the Primary and the Violence in Nimba County.
According to the September 19, 2020 statement, Mr. Cummings recalled that on Sunday, September 6, 2020, delegates of the Alternative National Congress (ANC), the Unity Party (UP), the Liberty Party (LP) and the All Liberian Party (ALP), gathered in Sanniquellie at a primary to elect a candidate to represent Nimba in the 2020 Special Senatorial Elections.
“More than being the political capital of Nimba, Sanniquellie, bears another symbol – the birthplace of African Unity. CPP was therefore thrilled to assemble in Sanniquellie, believing that the ideals Liberia championed in 1963 to unite Africa, would keep the people of Liberia united through the CPP,” Mr. Cummings observed.
But he stated that, unfortunately, the primary was not managed properly and became a divisive bloody theatre of violence, causing great pain and embarrassment to the CPP. “For fear of his life, Taa Wongbe, a major contender and candidate of the ANC and his supporters, did not participate in the primary, thereby rendering the primary – between only two candidates – incomplete and invalid. An Independent Review Panel (IRP) constituted to investigate the conduct of the Nimba County Senatorial Primary did not validate the results and further noted the process as flawed and lacking credibility. As leader of the CPP, I am concerned about the outcome of the primaries, and accept the painful truth from the IRP.”
Although Mr. Cummings openly renewed his condemnation of the violence and the Nimba primary process as flawed and therefore considered its outcome invalid, reaffirming his earlier stance that no candidate won the Nimba primary; the Political Leader of both the CPP and the ANC noted his concern for saving Liberia by keeping the CPP together and redirecting the party’s energies toward the real challenge – the corrupt and inept leadership of the current regime, while being mindful of the special political interest of the ANC.
“There comes a time when leaders must make sacrifices, devoid of selfish political motives, for the common good of a country and people. I recognize that this is not an ideal situation and is tough. However, we must make compromises to keep the CPP together and strong. I am therefore grateful that Taa Wongbe of the ANC has agreed with me and consented to put Liberia above ourselves and make the sacrifice while he makes decisions on his next steps. Under this circumstance, I, Alexander B. Cummings, have agreed to let Edit Gongloe represent the CPP in Nimba. This will ensure that we have candidates in each of our 15 counties in the upcoming elections, that the CPP and especially ANC is committed to women empowerment and increase of female representation,” Mr. Cummings stated.
“To our colleagues in the CPP, our numerous compromises on many occasions within the CPP is not a sign of weakness, but a determination to keep Liberia’s opposition together, despite attempts to break it apart. We are committed to redeeming Liberia through a united fight against the CDC. To our partisans in the ANC, we have made several compromises in the interest of keeping the CPP together, and in many instances hurt the ANC. But let us remember that Liberia is greater than us all. We assure you that Liberia will win and the ANC and CPP will triumph,” Cummings cautioned.