MONROVIA – Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lewis Geesardeh Brown yesterday, Monday, September 12, 2022, made a public declaration to endorse and support the presidential ambition of Alexander B. Cummings, the standard bearer of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) because “he has the character, temperament, depth of understanding, integrity and leadership credentials to move our nation into the future we seek.”
Brown, a stalwart of the National Patriotic Party(NPP) prior to the statement yesterday had earlier announced that he would address the nation on critical national issues and in the process make his presidential pick against 2023, thus putting politicians, actors and others stakeholders in our polity in suspense as to who his choice would be. However he did let the cat out of the bag yesterday with several reasons why he chose Cummings above the rest in the pack.
“Let there be no doubt: If we are to become better – if we will do better – it will matter who becomes our president, senators and representatives in 2023. It will matter, and must seriously concern us, what their work habits are, what their temperaments are, what their values are, what their experiences, competencies and grievances are, what their views of other Liberians are, and importantly, we must truly understand and be convinced about why they truly desire to lead and or represent us.
“This is why, for the next President of our country, although I am a member of the National Patriotic Party (NPP), which is a member of the ruling coalition, I endorse, and have decided to support, Mr. Alexander Benedict Cummings (ABC).
“As a contest, I note that ABC is sandwiched between a former and current ruling party. Being former and current ruling parties speaks enormous political, institutional, human capacity, and economic advantages, for which, I understand that the choice of ABC may not be the easiest, today. However, ABC is the right choice for the changes we must make to realize the tomorrow we seek”, he said.
Brown who was a key public figure during the administration of former President Charles G. Taylor said in a broadcast aired on a number of radio stations in Monrovia said who Liberians choose in 2023 as President will decide if the citizens will continue to be scared to walk the streets, even during the day, and if they will continue to sleep restlessly at night, fearing the worst for themselves and their loved ones, adding that who they elect will decide the prices of food, the salaries of workers, and whether there will be jobs for those who are unemployed. He then went on to list some of the other reasons why he chose to do the way of Cummings
“I stand with ABC because he is right. He has the character, temperament, depth of understanding, integrity and leadership credentials to move our nation into the future we seek. I stand with ABC because he inspires a new mindset not just to have us accept what is wrong with us, but to courageously try to push us into doing what is right for all of us. I stand with ABC because his examples motivate all of us to draw new standards for ourselves, so that all of us can do better for Liberia.
“I stand with ABC because of the boldness of vision, the freshness of ideas, the courage to continue to fight when it seems easier to surrender, and the quality of leadership experiences he has achieved to get things done.
“I stand with ABC because we must change our dysfunctional and discredited system of governance rather than continue to manage it.
“I stand with ABC because in 2023, we must elect a leader to be President rather than elect a President we hope might become a leader”, Brown said.
Making an emphatic statement about the importance of the 2023 elections, Brown who was one of the signatories of the Accra Comprehensive Peace Agreement said the year will mark the 20th anniversary which ended years of wars in the country and since the signing in 2003, thankfully the country has not fallen back to war and hopefully will never choose wars to settle political disagreements or economic disaffection. He however said that it is his hope that Liberians will make the right choice in 2023 to further consolidate on the peace the country has enjoyed as well as ensuring that those who will be elected will serve the people rightly.
“Notwithstanding, with threats of violence and retributions against those who dare to publicly disagree, suspicions of weaponizing the courts against perceived opponents, a growing wave of crimes and insecurity, mysterious deaths, high unemployment, deepening divisions, and worsening economic conditions; it is safe to say that our nation’s cherished peace is under stress. The credible conduct and outcome of the elections in 2023 is, therefore, a critical test for the future of our country. I encourage the government and all of us to undertake this crucial test responsibly.
“Leadership matters. The Holy Bible instructs that the people will perish where leaders have no vision. People suffer, kingdoms fall and nations fail when leaders cannot see, do not hear, or will not change. Therefore, the decisions we make in 2023 about who will lead us, will also decide, at least for a generation, if our nation will rise or fall – if we will move backward or forward. It will determine if we achieve our individual dreams, or if our businesses will fail. Who we choose to lead us in 2023 will decide the condition of the hospitals we will go to when we get sick, and what the quality of the classrooms will be, in the schools our children attend”, Brown stated.
The veteran politician told his audience that the truth is that Liberians are not afraid to change but unfortunately, too many of the country’s leaders have viewed change as diminishing of their power whereas democracy is not about making powerful leaders but about empowering so-called powerless people.
“This is why, important as they may be, it does not really matter how many roads, bridges and buildings we may construct; if Liberians continue to remain poor, dependent, and without quality education, we embellish the body of a stained soul. We thereby lose our way, undermining democracy, and risking the future peace and security of our nation.
“ABC understands this. He understands that we must fix the dysfunctional system that lifts leaders up and keeps people down. We must lift Liberians up, and offer the chance for all to improve their lives.
“In 2023, with ABC, we must stand up for Liberia. We must stand up for real change. We cannot lose hope. We cannot be frightened.
“Wherever you are – whatever your tribe, party, gender or religion – now is the time to get involved; together, we can win for Liberia”, he said.
The endorsement and support from Brown is the second of the high profile ones Cummings has received in recent times to boost his chances in 2023. Like Brown who maintains his active membership with the CDC, former renowned diplomat Togar McCintosh also of the CDC gave his unflinching support to the former Vice President of Coca Cola Worldwide as the best alternative among those who will be jostling for the plum job in the land in 2023.
Political pundits see the latest endorsement for Cummings as a plus to his quest given the political pedigree of Brown who is viewed as an old horse in the political gain and if harnessed will be an added asset.