MONROVIA – The re-election bid for President George Manneh Weah gained further traction on Sunday, February 12, 2023 when he received an endorsement from two women organizations, “Forceful Women for Weah 2023” and the “4B Movement”, both of which he accepted wholeheartedly during an elaborate event where he mocked the opposition for lacking the capacity to unseat him democratically, discounting the opposition to the women groups with the taunt: “Don’t mind them”.
President Weah, who was extremely excited by the huge attendance and the encouragement he got from the endorsement, decided to speak out clearly to the women groups in the language and mood that brought out a memorable moment where his message resonated for his reelection on October 10, 2023.
“Don’t mind them. They are afraid of you and that is why they talk about me, don’t mind them.
“Together, we will work together to have a place in this country, don’t mind them.
“Let them leave you, so I will do my work, don’t mind them.
“Your roads, we are doing your roads and they will tell you that road we will eat, don’t mind them.
“We have more women in government, they will tell you it is not good, don’t mind them.
“We build our economy, they say it is not good, don’t mind them.
“For once, it is unprecedented to see that in the past four years, more hospitals were built in the Republic of Liberia but they tell you we don’t know about the health sector, don’t mind them.
“Today, there is free education in our country, they will tell you there is no free education, don’t mind them.
“We are here, anything we do, they will not talk about it, don’t mind them,” President Weah chanted to the women who responded with resounding cheers.
Earlier on President Weah, while speaking from his prepared speech said he was delighted, humbled and honored by the kind of sentiments of solidarity and support towards his re-election, but was however cautious and circumspect of not violating the election laws on pre-election campaigns.
“Before going any further in these remarks, I would like to make it clear that my presence here to receive your endorsement of my intention to run again for the Presidency is not part of campaigning for elections. This declaration of my intent is only to signal to the partisans of the mighty Coalition for Democratic Change my desire to be re-elected as their Standard Bearer at the forthcoming Convention of the Party. Whenever this is done, we wish to assure all stakeholders that we will be in strict compliance with the regulations governing campaign activities, as issued by the National Elections Commission.
“Having said that, I am particularly grateful to receive this endorsement from the Forceful Women organization, its members, supporters, partners, and friends, in collaboration with the 4-B Movement. I am also delighted to see the enthusiasm of the Liberian fan club of Biguini, the great Mande artiste from Mali, who has performed so beautifully for our entertainment tonight,” President Weah enjoined.
The Liberian leader said he has always had a close affinity with the Muslim faith, since his days when he attended the Muslim Congress High School in Monrovia and expressed dismay “over growing misinformation and false perceptions being spread by political miscreants in the corridor of our national politics, and in society in general, that the Mandingo Community is apprehensive about my leadership, my Government, and the CDC itself”.
“I want to inform you that nothing could be further from the truth, as you yourselves can see from this gathering of people of influence from this Community. These people would not gather here to endorse my candidacy for re-election for a second Presidential term, if they felt this way.
“Quite to the contrary, I have worked diligently and consistently to foster religious inclusion and tolerance since the beginning of my incumbency in 2018. This is because of my strong conviction that this is a necessary ingredient for a peaceful and cohesive society. I believe that freedom of religion, as enshrined in our Constitution, is an inalienable human right. Not only do I believe in freedom of worship…I practice it, because I am as comfortable worshiping in a mosque as I am worshiping in a church or synagogue”, he said.
The President said he will continue to engage all persons of every religious belief and ethnic background, because religion and ethnicity are not prerequisites or pre-qualifications for political affiliation in Liberia.
He said although he was fully aware that the endorsement is not coming from the entire Mandingo Community, or from all women in that Community, he was nevertheless extremely pleased to receive it from the particular group of women, many of whom are very strong business people.
“As Liberia’s Feminist-in-Chief, I am always delighted to learn of the good fortunes of empowered and successful women in community leadership. I look forward to meeting many other Groups in your Community.
“Once again, let me thank you for your kind and spontaneous endorsement of my plans to seek re-election to a second term as President of the Republic of Liberia. If I am successful, I promise to continue to deliver transformational developments across the country that will have direct and positive impacts on the social and economic upliftment of all Liberians”, the President said.
Early during the program, the audience was thrilled by the performance of a guest artist from Mali, Biguinin who flew in the country during the course of the week to perform at the program.