Smack in the center of the ongoing imbroglio that threatens to tear the Collaborating Political Parties apart, the Liberty Party Secretariat has distanced itself from comments made recently by their political leader Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence, to the effect that former Vice President Joseph Nyuma Boakai is the most eligible candidate to head the CPP ticket as standard bearer. Making its position known Tuesday, September 14, 2021, in a strongly worded press statement, the LP Secretariat said it takes serious exception to comments made by its PL during a press conference in which she stated that the only aspirant that has been qualified by the CPP to contest in the CPP elections process is the Unity Party Aspirant.
According to the LP Secretariat, the Executive Committee of the Liberty Party is informed that several “decisions“ were reportedly taken by its Political Leader.
“The Executive Committee states clearly that any decision taken unilaterally by anyone, including the Political Leader, outside the LP’s constitutionally prescribed consultation channels does not represent the official position of the Liberty Party. All such unauthorized announcements and actions are only intended to stir up confusion in the Liberty Party,” the LP stated.
The Liberty Party said it wishes to clarify that the decision taken by its political leaders at the meeting with the four Political Leaders of the CPP last week, to extend the term of the LP’s Political Leader’s chairmanship of the CPP, is not only a violation of the text of the CPP Framework Document binding the Four Constituent Parties (ALP, UP, ANC and LP), but was without any consultation with, and approval from the Liberty Party Executive Committee. LP’s Chairmanship of the CPP, as authorized by the CPP’s Framework Agreement ends on September 19, 2021.
“LP has informed the Unity Party (UP) through its Chairman, Mr. Amin Modad that it shall turn over to the UP the Chairmanship of the CPP as prescribed by the CPP Framework Document, and do so on time,” the CPP constituent member noted.
“Liberty Party further notes a comment made by its PL during a press conference in which she stated that the only aspirant that has been qualified by the CPP to contest in the CPP elections process is the Unity Party Aspirant.
“By way of information, the LP Chairman, Mr. Musa Hassan Bility, who is the current Chairman of the CPP-NEC says that the document containing CPP Elections Rules and Regulations has been reviewed and accepted in its entirety except one provision thereof. Two Constituent Parties, All Liberian Party (ALP) and the Unity Part (UP), requested the CPP National Executive Committee to grant them a two week-time period for further consultations with their respective Executive Committees.
“This request was granted by all four Constituent Parties of the CPP. The two parties were expected to revert to the CPP NEC by Monday, September 13, 2021, with their final positions. However, a few hours before the meeting the ALP representatives to the CPP National Executive Committee informed the body that none of their members would be available to attend the meeting due to an unforeseen emergency. The meeting has been rescheduled for Wednesday, September 15, 2021. Barring any other issues, the CPP National Executive Committee expects to have the CPP Elections Rules and Regulation document finalized by the week ending September 18, 2021.
“As such, the Liberty Party wishes to inform the general public that, to date, Tuesday, September 14, 2021, no aspirant has qualified as an Aspirant to contest the Standard Bearership of the CPP. It is simple logic that such cannot be properly done in the absence of approved Guidelines and Regulations by the National Executive Committee of the CPP.
Investigation by CPP into Allegations of Alteration of CPP Framework Document
The LP said, under the Framework Document, the procedure is set forth for dispute resolution as prescribed in the Framework Document that it is the National Executive Committee of the CPP that is authorized to entertain and dispose of disputes, disagreements and contentions arising from, or related to the implementation of the Framework Document.
“Therefore, any “decision” said to have been reached by the Political Leaders outside the procedure prescribed in the Framework Document violates the letter and spirit of the Framework Document. The Political Leader of Liberty Party, Senator Karngar-Lawrence is a representative of LP in chairing the CPP. Accordingly, any and all decisions by the LP Political Leader must be the outcome of consultation with the National Executive Committee of Liberty Party.
“The Liberty Party Executive Committee informs the public it does not, and shall not endorse this unilateral decision by the PL because it is not in compliance with the CPP FD and was not made with input from LP,” the release stated.
On the issue of bloc voting, the LP said it also takes note of the current discussion surrounding the use of Bloc Voting as a means of electing Constituent Party Standard Bearers to contest the CPP Standard Bearership. The National Executive Committee of the Liberty Party would like to also clarify that it has taken no decision to support any such process as this clearly was never contemplated in the CPP Framework Document.
“Furthermore, no formal proposal of this clear deviation from the the CPP contemplated procedure has been brought to the attention of the CPP National Executive Committee. The National Executive Committee of the Liberty Party therefore states that it is unmoved and not bothered by the public posturing or noise of anyone without the knowledge of the decision-making processes of the CPP.
“The LP assures the public that it intends to jealously guide its democratic commitments and will accordingly respond to any noise of Bloc Voting when it becomes a formal position to be considered by the CPP of which the LP is a constituent member-party.
“The Liberty Party again assures the general public that it shall remain solemnly faithful to the procedures outline in the CPP Framework Document, and will determinedly uphold its core values and guiding principles of democracy which formed the foundations on which the CPP has been established, and the promise to Liberians to be different.
Alleged Alteration of the LP Constitution
On the issue of Sen. Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence, Political Leader of the Liberty Party, allegation that the LP Constitution, approved at the LP Convention in January 2020, the Secretariat indicated that Senator Lawrence wrote a formal letter of complaint to the National Elections Commission, indicating breaches in the filing procedure submitting the LP’s approved 2020 Constitution to the National Elections Commission.
“That complaint has been referred back to the Liberty Party to be disposed of in accordance with the Party’s prescribed internal Resolution Mechanism. The Complaint is currently before the LP’s National Advisory Council LP’ NAC for resolution. A seven (7) person Investigation Committee will convene to deal with the Political Leader’s complaint and submit its findings and recommend actions to be taken. The Investigation Committee, within seven (7) days after being seized of the matter, will submit its report to the LP’s National Executive Committee. The LP Claims and Petitions Committee (CPIC) is also investigating several other claims relating to other allegations contained in the Political Leader’s letter of complaint. The CPIC is also expected to complete its investigation and submit its findings and recommendations hopefully by the close of this week,” the release noted