MONROVIA – As if nothing has changed and the former right hand man of President George Manneh Weah still held sway at the epicenter of political decisions in the country, Nathaniel Farlo McGill, former Minister of State for Presidential Affairs yesterday, Wednesday, January 12, 2023, received a tumultuous welcome from thousands of supporters, sympathizers, friends and well-wishers from all walks of life in Margibi County and other parts of nearby counties who thronged the Roberts International Airport (RIA) upon McGill’s return to the country, where he solemnly vowed to make Margibi great and united than ever before. He also vowed that he has no intention to destroy the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) as is being speculated in some quarters.
The vicinity of the RIA was a sight to behold as the welcoming crowd, majority of whom, dressed in white T-Shirt emblazoned with the photo of Mr. McGill made their way to the airport much earlier in the day, amid singing, dancing, conveying of posters and placards of various sizes and inscriptions announcing support for his Senatorial bid.
As the enthusiastic crowd eagerly awaited the arrival of their august personality, there were a series of anxious moments each time an airplane touched down at the airport as they grew impatient to get the sight of Mr. McGill. But then their prayer was answered when protocol officers involved in the welcome activities gleefully told them of the arrival of the plane that brought him into the country.
After the necessary airport formalities, McGill dressed in a blue pair of jeans trousers, a red T-Shirt and a blue jacket on top and cap to match, came out, majestically waving to the people amid a tight security built around him by his own security who provided human shield around him, while the surging supporters jumped into jubilant frenzy, chanting battle cries, singing, dancing and hailing him.
As if it was not enough, the huge gathering then marched with him from the RIA straight to Dolo Town where an elaborate welcome and thanksgiving programs for the former Minister was held organized by the Porcupine Brigade, the political structure which is in the forefront of McGill’s senatorial campaign in the county.
A special prayer from a group of clergymen was performed where they thanked God for the travel mercies on him and asked God to bless his endeavors as he embarked upon his quest to become the next senator of Margibi County.
In his brief welcome remarks, the City Mayor of Unification City said the citizens and residents of the area were excited to welcome McGill back to the country and lauded him for the series of interventions he has been making in the area, promising to reciprocate his humanitarian gestures by mobilizing support towards his senatorial ambition.
The Assistant Superintendent for Development also spoke in a similar vein, welcomed McGill and commended him for his immense support to the county and its people. He then turned over McGill to the traditional council through a proxy for blessing, who as well said he was very proud of what McGill has been doing in the area.
“Mr. McGill, I know you. You are my son, and for what you have done for us, we the people in this area will remember you and will not fail you. We are for you and we will make sure what you are looking for you will get it,” he said amid cheers.
The head of the Margibi County Branch of the Porcupine Brigade said it was a great honor to have McGill in the county to contest the senatorial race in Margibi, which according to him was a “blessing to the county”, noting that McGill has not been telling anyone that he will do this or that when he is elected but he has started doing something for the people of Margibi long before he even decided to contest.
The aggressive grassroot mobilizer told the jubilant crowd that for a long time the county has been voting for politicians who have failed them but this time around, “we have someone who has this county at heart and has demonstrated to us that he is capable of changing the lives of our people with development projects. He is the kind of talk-and-do person”, he said.
Several persons and various groups, including political parties, women groups and community organizations also spoke at the occasion to praise McGill for his impactful initiatives he has been carrying out for the people in Margibi.
Mr. Leroy Brown, the County Chair of the Liberia People’s Democratic Party (LPDP), said McGill’s candidature goes beyond party line as the people of the county have resolved to support his senatorial aspiration based on equity, fairness and the commitment shown towards the development of the county.
“We are not looking at political party affiliation, we are looking at equity, fairness and the commitment McGill has shown to this county. In the past we had Marshall and Gibi territory which were combined together to have Margibi County. We used to have rotational senators, one for lower and the other one from the upper. In 2020, we elected a Senator from Upper Margibi, this time around, we are going to elect someone from Lower Margibi and we are all going to go beyond party line to elect Mr. Nathaniel Farlo McGill as our next Senator”, he said amid cheers.
A representative for the market women spoke kindly of the generosity of McGill and mentioned how he renovated the market building in Unification City which according to her “made us have shelter from the rain and sun when we are selling. She vowed maximum support from the market women during the election to have him in the senate.
Responding to the many speeches and the favorable endorsements from the people and institutions at the program, McGill said he was wordless and overwhelmed by the love, admiration and support shown him especially towards his senatorial bid. He said those gestures can only inspire him to do more for the people and country within his power.
“Let me thank you all for coming. I want to say thank you Margibi, thank you all for coming and your support you have given me and I know God is about to do great things in this county.
“When others thought it was over for McGill, God brought another way and is going to do bigger things for us and the county. People were saying we are not going to support the party, the Coalition for Democratic Change. It is not true. I will not destroy the party, I will not destroy CDC.
“We are building a coalition for Margibi. It is time to make Margibi County great. Gone are the days when one person will sit down and decide for the whole county. No. Things have changed. It is time for our children to become what they want to become and not what others want them to be,” McGill vowed.
The arrival of McGill according to pundits means a lot to the polity, especially the CDC which is said to be in search of an arrowhead to lead its charge for re-election in 2023, against the background of the mounting pressure from the opposition to wrestle power from the ruling establishment.
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