MONROVIA- Rarely does this happen in a political contest, but for former Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Nathaniel Farlo McGill, despite his recent travails, his political stock is on the rise as Gbarpolu, Bong and Margibi Counties, where he is believed to have the highest stakes, are all jostling for his consent to contest for their respective senatorial seats, as a reciprocal gesture for the humanitarian assistance he has rendered the people of those counties over the years.
Latest information available to The Analyst has it that massive preparations are underway in those counties for formal petition ceremonies to be held in those counties where citizens and residents will be delivering their respective petitions asking for McGill’s consent to run as their next senator.
According to some of the organizers that spoke with the media, former Minister McGill’s acceptance of their pending petitions is something that is needed right now to seal a deal that will see the former official of government representing any of the counties come 2024 when the next set of lawmakers will be taking their respective seats.
For Gbarpolu where McGill hails from, the organizers said his ascendency to the senate through the 2023 election will be re-enforcing the presence of prominent citizens from the county getting involved in the mainstream of national politics and decision making as his recent resignation created a big void in terms of representation, hence the petition to him to accept the request from his “fathers, mothers, uncles, aunties, brothers, sisters, cousins, nephews, other relatives” who are all resolved to give him the massive support needed.
The citizens said McGill elevated the status of Gbarpolu County from being one of the recently established political subdivisions, as compared to the older ones, by using his leverage in government to attract massive development projects like the ultra-modern Emirates Hospital, the first of its kind in the county; the Pro Poor Housing units; roads connectivity, among other infrastructural projects.
“Of course, one good turn deserves another. Our son has brought pride to us, he has been the shining light up there. His influence has been like an open door to opportunities for us and he has wisely used his leverage to attract so many projects in the county. Now that he has decided to leave the executive branch of government where he performed so well, we are petitioning him to go to the senate and represent us so that we can always have somebody up there that we can look up as a county”, one of the forerunners of the petition told this paper yesterday.
The citizens also highlighted how many sons and daughters from the county have been given jobs and other opportunities in the current government “than any other administration since the county was created”, and believe that having him in government will consolidate the gains he has brought to the county and its people.
Just when it became certain the request from Gbarpolu to McGill would have sealed his consent, Bong County has coming running with their planned petition. As Liberia’s fourth most vote-rich county, Bong is also gearing to petition McGill to represent them in the Liberian senate.
Setting on the table some tantalizing claims, Bong County is arguing that by virtue of a long-standing African tradition where it is said that the name, fame and wealth a child can be traced to the blessings from the maternal side, the maverick politician is a bonafide son of Bong County because his mother hails from there; therefore he must benefit from every bit of entitlement, especially so when he has invested so much towards the socio-economic development of the County.
It is no secret that McGill has on so many occasions spearheaded humanitarian initiatives from President George Manneh Weah in Bong County, including but not limited to scholarships, financial assistance to students and loans to market women, as well as extending special help to the elderly people in the county.
The citizens further argued that McGill has localized his status with the people by owning a house in Gbarnga which he constructed during his tenure as Minister of State where he resides whenever he visits the county, and normally receives in audience prominent citizens such as politicians, traditional rulers and ordinary citizens who regularly visit to consult with the former Minister of State.
“We are a blessed people and that is why any child that is born from our lineage, especially children from our daughters, is blessed. So, it is not surprising that the young man has been successful. He is our own son and has the right like any other citizen from Bong County to ask for things from us, and if he cannot ask us, it is our right, according to tradition, to look around and give him something that we believe he worked for. So, we are saying, let him go to the Senate to represent us and he will win”, a traditional leader boastfully said.
“Because of the trust President Weah has in him, my three children have been able to be in school. Anytime Mr. McGill comes to Gbarnga, he comes with good news for our children in schools and we the market women. So, we have decided to come together to tell him that it is time for us to say we want to pay you back for all you have done for us and continue to do”, an excited Ma Kebeh Wiles said.
As for the people of Margibi, their quest for McGill to accept their petition is anchored on his being a resident in the County for the past five years, while making significant contributions in the county, thereby impacting the lives of the people.
A middle-aged man who confirmed that indeed, a petition program is being planned in that direction, said that McGill owns a property in the County where he has been paying taxes just as the citizens and other residents.
“Besides that, what is the most overriding issue, Mr. McGill has been deeply involved in the socioeconomic development of this county. I can give you examples of his initiatives in the county.
“Through his influence, the Ministry of Public Works was able to build a long stretch of road that connects some communities that have been inaccessible for a very long time. He has also assisted so many people, both old and young with jobs, financial assistance and other opportunities”, he said.
“Let us not forget the Presidential outreach initiatives that he was entrusted with to reach so many people in this county, especially the payment of school tuitions and other fees for our children which has removed the untold burden from us the parents. He has been handling the project with so much zeal and passion and we are grateful to that. We are not asking for anything other than to appeal to him to accept our petition to represent us in the upper chambers of our national legislature”, said Miss Gladys Wlutayonoh Gaba, a community leader and a single mother of two kids in Kakata.
As all of the three counties are making frantic efforts to engage Mr. McGill through their proposed petitions, political pundits are of the view that McGill may have a herculean task to pick any one of the counties because they all made appealing claims that appear to be irresistible. The coming days will be interesting as he weighs all options available.
I thought they say if one man steal and anyone eats it, then the both of them are thieves.?
Or the theory of guilty by affiliation doesn’t apply in Liberia?
What is wrong with the “Liberian mentality”?
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