The opposition Liberty Party yesterday rose to the occasion to suspend its National Vice Chairman for Operations, Mr. Elder Jallah in connection to an audio recording of a telephone conversation between him and the Chairman of the local chapter of the Party, Mr. Thomas Pyne. Mr. Jallah, in the audio, is reported to have ruled out the possibility of Senator Nyonblee Karngar Lawrence, political leader of the party, emerging as the Presidential candidate of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP); he is also reported to have solicited the support of Mr. Pyne for his preferred candidate of the CPP.
A press release issued yesterday and signed by Mr. Musa Hassan Bility, the Liberty Party’s National Chairman, indicated that why expressing its utmost dismay of the development concerning the categorical utterances of Mr. Jallah as contained in the recording, these utterances do not represent the position of the party as a constituent member of the CPP.
The release said consistent with the Constitution of the LP, neither Mr. Jallah nor any Executive of the LP has the power to initiate conversations about mergers or collaboration without the knowledge of the Political Leader and the Executive Committee.
“Liberty Party wishes to make it categorically clear that only the Political Leader has the authority to initiate any such discussion as to the political direction of the Party. A formal decision can only be made upon the recommendation of the Political Leader to the National Executive Committee and ultimately approved by the National or Special Convention of the Liberty Party”, the release said.
“Therefore, Mr. Jallah is hereby suspended for two months for making references to the Political Leader in a form and manner unbecoming of an Executive of the Party. The suspension takes immediate effect,” the release continued.
Meanwhile, the LP’s Executive Committee has constituted a committee to investigate circumstances surrounding the leaked audio recording”.
The party concluded by calling on the public, particularly members of the CPP not to be moved by the action of Mr. Elder Jallah as it shall have absolutely no bearing on the decision of the party regarding whether the party will put up a candidate for the Standard-bearer of the CPP or endorse a constituent party.
In a related development, a group calling itself Concerned Liberty Partisans, said it was shock and dismay on hearing the news surrounding the leaked audio recording that has since gone viral in which Mr. Jallah was instructing chairpersons of the party’s local chapters to support the political leader of the Alternative National Congress (ANC), Mr. Alexander B. Cummings to emerge as standard bearer of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP).
The release did not just bemoaned the development, it also went on to point accusing fingers to some top executives of the party including the Chairman, Mr. Musa Hassan Bility
“On closer examination, we have come to realize that the contents of the leaked audio are a direct replay of a recent meeting Mr. Bility held with chairpersons of the fifteen counties about three weeks ago.
During that meeting, Mr. Bility and Elder Jallah, the culprit in the leaked audio, distributed two motor bikes to each county Chairman, seemingly as an inducement for their support to Mr. Cummings, when LP meets to determine who to support in the CPP,” the Concerned Liberty Partisans furthered in the release.
The release furthered: “We recall, also, that the leaked audio testifies to Mr. Elder Jallah’s checkered history of undermining Liberty Party’s internal stability. Prior to an Executive Council Sitting in 2019, it was he who mobilized LP Chairpersons in Kakata to sign a resolution for the removal of Zargo so as to facilitate Mr. Bility’s ascendency,” the group further recalled
The Concerned Liberty Partisans further recalled that Chairman Zargo subsequently held a press conference in which he revealed a ploy by elements of the Executive Committee of LP to remove him in anticipation of an eventual CPP Convention, adding that the ploy was cooked up against the backdrop that if he remained as LP Chair, he would be inclined to supporting his kinsman, Ambassador Joe Boakai.
The Concerned LP Partisans said called on the Political Leader of the party to go beyond the suspension of Mr. Jallah, but to refer the matter to the National Advisory Council to launch a full scale investigation into this embarrassing situation, involving both Mr. Bility and his Operations man, Elder Jallah.
The release added that the call by the Concerned Liberty Partisans was against the backdrop that Mr. Jallah could never have acted in isolation of Mr. Musa Bility, as revealed in the audio.
The “Concerned LIBERTY Partisans believe such a move will send a strong signal to the other CPP members that LP is not supportive of inducement politics that is now plaguing the LP”, the release concluded.