McCintosh Clarifies -Says Not Consulted on GC Appointment; “Not a member of UP”

Dr. Togba Gayewea McCintosh, a former Minister of Foreign Affairs has provided some clarifications on issues surrounding his political future that have come up in the public glare in recent time, saying he rejected the nomination from President George Manneh Weah to chair the Governance Commission as he wasn’t consulted prior to the President announcing his name. Dr. McIntosh also clarified that he is no longer a member of the former ruling Unity Party, which he said he nurtured from an ordinary political party operating a one-room facility to becoming a ruling party in 2005.

Providing further clarifications, Dr. McCintosh, who appeared Wednesday, May 11, 2022 on a live phone in program anchored on the state-run ELBS, said he was speaking out because the Liberian society is gullible, and that people most often thrive on speculations without fact-checking.

“First of all, I was not in the country when the appointment was made. Secondly, I was not consulted. It was like a news flash that I received and there was no internal depth around it so that I will consult other family members and friends,” Dr. McIntosh stated.

Providing a backdrop about how he came to public service after the civil war era, the well versed public servant said that he was part of the first team when the institution was called the Governance Reform Commission on the invitation of its pioneer chairperson, former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, at the time he was into private consultancy in Botswana and served as the Executive Director on a voluntary basis.

He said upon the election of Madam Sirleaf, she elevated the formation of the institution with an Act passed by the National Legislature. The Act, he said, among other things mandated that commissioners appointed at GC should not be involved in active national politics, something that he felt did not go down well with his ambition to be actively involved in politics in 2023. He did not however state specifically what part he will play such as being a candidate and if so, which position he will be aspiring for.

“If you look at the Act that created the Governance Commission, it says that the five commissioners serving on the Board should not be involved in politics, and so I have decided to take active part in national politics next year. So, as it will be a contravention of the Act, I decided to stay out of it. Again, there was no room for consultation before the appointment”, Dr. McCintosh said.

On the news making the round that he intends to contest the primary of the Unity Party against former Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai, Dr. McCintosh was initially evasive of the question, citing a traditional Bassa saying that a mouth automatically opens once the hand carrying food from a pan approaches a specific reach to it, meaning that he is already in politics and at a particular time, the public will know exactly his intention.

When pressed further, he said he was one of the pillars of the Unity Party when it was not near state power, working hard with others from a single room and bringing it to state power. He resigned from the party some time ago and is now a member of the Governing Council of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC), thus foreclosing any inclination of being an aspirant for the Presidency under the platform of UP.

He however said that he was concerned about the future of the party in recent time because the objective of every political party is to take state power but if it engulfed in minor things that affects its direction, then there is no way it can be possible, apparently referencing the series of internal issues within the opposition bloc where UP should be playing a leading role.

Dr. McCintosh’s career path boasts of a very rich profile, rising through the ranks at the then Ministry of Planning and Economic Affairs from a cadet to heads of various departments, then assistant minister, deputy minister and eventually a Minister proper at various times at the Ministry.

He has also served in various capacities at the international level, among which are Vice President of the ECOWAS Commission, Senior Economic Affairs Officer of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), and Board member on the World Bank representing 22 African countries, among others.

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