“Even Joe Boakai Knows Cummings Is Innocent” -ANC Executive Challenges Urey, Mo Ali on FD Alteration Allegation

An executive member of the Alternative National Congress (ANC) has challenged the political leader of the All Liberia Party (ALP), Mr. Benoni Urey, and the Secretary General of the former ruling Unity Party (UP), Mo Ali, to come clean and tell the Liberian people that they did not provide facts to the citizens concerning the framework document of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP), but decided to malign the character and reputation of Mr. Alexander Cummings, the political leader of the ANC, by alleging that he “criminally” altered the framework document, adding that even former Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai is convinced that Cummings did not alter the document.

The assertion was made by Mrs. Victoria Torlo Koiquah, the Vice President for Political and International Affairs of the ANC, when she appeared on the live program of the Spoon TV Network on the evening of Friday, May 13, 2022 where she addressed series of national issues such as her senatorial ambition in 2023, her support to Senator Abraham Darius Dillon during the two elections that the senator won in Montserrado County, the postponed Lofa County senatorial bye-election, and the strides that the ANC has been making over the period to garner support towards 2023.

“Mo Ali made a presentation of the investigation report to the National Advisory Council (NAC) that exonerated Mr. Cummings. Dillon said to Mo Ali twice: ‘I have seen your report, I like your report, but I want to ask you one question: of all what you have just said, is there any information if the ANC changed anything that was submitted?’ And Mo Ali said no. Mo did not just say no, but the signed up to report was given to us,” Mrs. Koiquah disclosed.

“The former Vice President, Mr. Joseph Nyumah Boakai then said if this is what the investigation has found, then we should not allow Liberian people’s hope to die down by this case. Let us move on. Urey got up and rejected it, and said: ‘Mr. Vice President, I differ with you on this, we are not going to leave it like this,” Mrs. Koiquah stated, noting that VP Boakai kept quiet and since that time, he has kept quiet.

Laying the foundation of the crisis that has been rocking the CPP with respect to the framework document, Mrs Koiquah who described herself as a key stakeholder and decision maker of the CPP during its formation days since she was a member of the NAC representing the ANC, said that it was unfortunate that Mr. Cummings is being dragged in court because his opponents feared the way he was moving with his engagement with the Liberian people and the momentum that was being built around his presidential ambition.

She said it was a known fact that the framework was signed on May 19, 2020 via zoom and no other signing was done again until the document was turned over to the lawyers who made their inputs and returned the same to the political leaders at the National Headquarters of the Liberty Party.

“Urey was the first person who accepted the input from the lawyers and the lawyers explained why they put in the withdrawal clause. I was right in the meeting, I sat down and was facing Urey on my right and Cummings on my left and Urey told Cummings, ‘Alex I think this document is fair enough’ and Cummings said yes, it is fair enough.

“Theodore Momo who is today in the witness seat, rocking and lying, was the one who asked Mr. Cummings whether the various Chairpersons of the constituent parties will sign the document and Cummings said, ‘Yes, including the political leaders’.

 “I challenge Mr. Urey to call and say what I am saying is not true, but then again you should expect it because that is the same way they made up stories to take Mr. Cummings to court,” she lamented.

Mrs. Koiquah, who publicly admitted that she voted for Boakai in 2017 against Cummings because she had reasoned at the time that the latter was new to the political landscape of the country, said she came under severe criticism from her own ANC members who had rejected the party agreeing to the withdrawal clause because in the future it will not favor the party.

“When the framework document was presented by the lawyers and an explanation was provided why they put in the withdrawal clause, I was heavily criticized by our own people in the ANC because I supported it. Some were even saying that I was supporting the document because I am from Lofa County with the former Vice President and that the document was done in a way to favor him. I stood my ground that it did not favor any particular party but we need to go out there, to campaign for ANC and get the votes we need from delegates during the convention to pick the standard bearer of the CPP,” Madam Koiquah stated.

She said upon receipt of the document, the ANC leader shared copies to all members of the National Advisory Council, including all the political leaders through emails and Whatsapp messages for their own record, and conversations started with every recipient making reference to the document to make inputs.

She further said that Cummings told his colleagues to hasten with the resolution from their respective parties so as to register CPP on time otherwise it could not field any candidate but that candidates will have to be featured by the individual parties. Madam Koiquah said Theodore Momo, National Chairman of the ALP, assured Cummings of prompt action to get the resolution signed, and he lived up to his promise when ALP submitted its resolution to Mr. Cummings on time.

Madam Koiquah said it was sad and unfortunate that Mr. Urey and others will sit down and concoct stories to the extent of even denying seeing the withdrawal clause in the document prepared by the lawyers, with special mention of Mo Ali who was very involved with everything concerning the framework document.

“I feel sorry for Mo Ali and I see why he did not want to swear on the Koran at the court because he knows what it means to swear on the Koran and then lie over it”, she said.

On other matters, she reiterated that the CPP is not taking part or supporting any candidate in the race for the Lofa County Senatorial by-election because as far as the collaboration was concerned, its candidate was former Defense Minister Brownie J. Samukai who was denied taking his seat because of the legal disability attached to him after he was convicted by courts for misappropriating pension funds belonging to some members of the Armed Forces of Liberia.

When asked to rate the candidates in the race, the prominent citizen of Lofa County said if she was to make her personal choice she will pick Madam Fofana because not only does Madam Fofana represent the underrepresentation of female in the national legislature, but she is the only female Muslim candidate representing a large proportion of the voters residing in the Lofa County that is dominated by Muslims and Mandingos.

While avoiding naming UP candidate Galakpai Kortimai, Mrs. Koiquah said as far as she was concerned, UP has no candidate in the race. She however averred that Cllr. Joseph Jallah who is contesting as an independent and being supported by the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) should exercise extra caution because elections are not always determined by people that turned up during campaigns, mentioning how Representative Thomas Fallah, who is one of the leading campaigners for Jallah lost in Montserrado County in 2020 despite all the money and material things he was sharing with the people for votes.

Touching on her relationship with Senator Abraham Darius Dillon whom she supported vehemently during the two elections he contested in Montserrado County against the ruling establishment , Mrs. Koiquah said that she has parted ways with him on principle as he has shown not to be true to his words or has been inconsistent.

“I was deeply involved in Dillon’s campaign and many people saw it. Despite what others said about him as not being educated, I told the people that we needed to work hard and not allow the CDC to win Montserrado. He didn’t have money as his bank balance of $3.50 could not do anything. I printed the first flyers for him in District #6 where I lived,” Mrs. Koiquah stated emphatically.

She said though Dillon has done some good things when he got to the Senate, such as fighting very hard to stop Mr. Ndubuisi Nwabudike from being confirmed as Chairman of the National Elections Commission(NEC), the anti-rape advocacy, and other national issues, but much was desired about his consistency and inability to keep some of the promises made such as the way he has been handling the development council he created where he promised to give back some of the money from his salary and benefits, his U-turn on use of vehicles to be used after criticizing what others used to have, his flight ticket issue that he lied on when it was first reported, among other issues.

“I was one of the three signatories to the account of the County Development Council, along with Martin Kollah who was then his Chief of Office Staff and Mrs. Comfort Bedell. The first problem was when he brought the first check of the US$15,000 and he wanted us to just see it for publicity and then give it back to him, but I insisted no, it had to be deposited in the account opened at the United Bank of Africa (UBA). And he refused. Since that time, I am not aware of any money going to that account and I don’t know how the Council is presently been run. But if the Council has a functioning, that means they are operating off the account, and I think I will have to go to the bank to know if it is still functioning because my name is there on that account and I will have to protect my name and reputation,” Koiquah stated.

She also startlingly revealed that Senator Dillon’s opposition against Cummings and the ANC has to do with what she called the “Anti-$30K” letter Cummings wrote against the lawmakers who took that amount, which did not go down well with Senator Dillon. She said on a particular day when she went to the Capitol Building to see some opposition lawmakers, she saw Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence along with Dillon, and Senator Lawrence told her why Cummings had to write such a letter against the lawmakers.

“All along, Dillon was telling us that he prefers Cummings and that he was leaning towards Cummings but from that letter he said he was leaning towards Boakai. If you can remember, when Senator Steve Zargo said that he preferred VP Boakai to head the ticket for the opposition, Dillon called on Musa Bility to take action against Steve Zargo because LP has not taken a decision on who to support. But see how he has openly endorsed VP Boakai when the LP at that time had not taken a decision to support any candidate”, she said.

Speaking on her ambition to contest against the incumbent Senator Saah Joseph of the CDC in Montserrado County, Mrs. Koiquah said that she has a good chance of winning in 2023 if given the chance to contest on the ticket of the CPP. She said as an institutional person, she will allow the party to have its decision on her ambition but remains optimistic that she will be given the opportunity to contest the race.

She dismissed the tag being placed on the incumbent as “powerful and hardworking”, claiming it is because Liberians do not normally read and understand, so they fly with anything.

“People call him powerful, hardworking, but for me, I believe people are not understanding their work as lawmakers. How many laws has he proposed for the county to curb the wave of crimes, rape all over the county, or what development plans has he put forward for the county? You find a situation where the EPS budget is above the police that should be fighting crimes. So what has he said about that and other things?” Mrs. Koiquah reasoned.

She said most of the projects being attributed to Senator Joseph are his personal properties such as the schools he has been building around here and don’t have impact on the citizens.

Mrs. Koiquah said her works in communities in and around Montserrado from her NGO background will speak for her during the election in addition to her strategies that she does not want to put in the public glare for her opponents to exploit.

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