Standoff Over ‘Altered’ Framework Document -Cummings Terms Urey’s Revelation Strange, Disturbing

The Liberian public was shock the other day when a topnotch official of the country’s opposition bloc, the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP), Mr. Benoni Urey, released a communication alleging that “some nefarious individuals within the hierarchy of the CPP” altered some unspecified provisions of their “organize framework document” and replaced them with “Alien Clauses to engender ulterior motives”. The Urey revelation, which falls short of specifics, has run chills in the spine of officials and members of the organization, something another key member and former chairperson of collaboration, Alexander Cummings, is not taking lying down. Mr. Alexander Cummings, who is political leader of the Alternative National Congress, said Mr. Urey’s use of “incendiary and provocative language” is intended to “evoke acrimony and cast aspersions on the integrity of the CPP generally and those within its hierarchy, specifically”. The Analyst reports.

Last week, the public awoke to a communication widely circulated on the social media tendered as a complaint by the Political Leader of the All Liberia Party (ALP), Mr. Benoni Urey, to the Chairperson of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP), Senator Nyomblee Kangar Lawrence.

In his August 18, 2021 communication, Mr. Urey draws the attention of the CPP through its chairperson to information which he claimed he got reliably whereby “certain portions and clauses within the organic framework document of the Collaborating Political Parties have been dubiously, viciously and purposefully altered by some nefarious individuals within the hierarchy of the CPP —and replaced by ‘Alien Clauses’ to engender ulterior motives”.

Urey all indicated that though this party was not casting aspersions and making conclusions, he had however gathered his cue from “unimpeachable sources” and that he “can by no means possible doubt its validity”.

“It is no gainsaying that such a despicable and woeful act, if permitted to happen, will spell upon the CPP a brazen doom,” Mr. Urey said further in the communication. “The ALP, therefore, kindly request you madam Chair to launch an immediate investigation into this troubling allegation in a bid to avert with rapidity what seems a potential looming danger that would potentially derail the CPP and dash the hope of the Liberian people whose only alternative for genuine redemption and transformation is the CPP, if this machination is not crushed sooner than later.”

He added: “We MUST not let our people down, especially in such time of sprawling socioeconomic despair.”

To ensure that the investigation as requested by is fair, transparent, and credible, Mr. Urey recommended that “we recommend that you set up an independent Investigative Panel to probe this matter with the greatest degree of urgency and exigency. The Investigative Panel we suggest must be a FOUR-MAN investigative panel comprising of ranking and reputable persons.”

He also requested that the CPP, through Madam Lawrence’s leadership, immediately notify the National Election Commission (NEC) as to the alleged notorious tempering with the Framework documents “by unscrupulous individuals and respectfully retrieve the current copy of the Framework within the NEC possession.”

Urey said the current copy with NEC, when retrieved, should be compared and verified with the original and organic copy on which the signatures of all four leaders of the CPP are affixed.

“Madam Chair, the initial engagement with NEC,” he stressed. “On this matter should mark the beginning of the investigation which should be finalized and findings submitted within at least one week.”

“Considering the existential threat afoot, we humbly encourage you to give this matter enormous attention and ensure that it is effectively and expeditiously resolved to a logical conclusion and anyone found culpable be dealt with in keeping with law,” the ALP leader said.

ANC Leader Responds

Though the current chairperson of the CPP is yet to make any public statement regarding Mr. Urey’s claims, one of the foremost constituent party, the Alternative National Congress has made its initial respond on the record.

In a letter to Madam Nyomblee Kangar Lawrence, ANC’s Political Leader Alexander Cummings said he was bothered by news reports of claims made by Mr. Benoni Urey alleging the altering of the CPP Framework document at the National Elections Commission.

“I believe this is a grave claim,” Mr. Cummings wrote. “To have such accusations in the public, more than one (1) year after our coming together, without the benefit of any internal consideration of its accuracy and validity, is strange and disturbing.”

Cummings noted that even more disturbing is Mr. Urey’s use of “such incendiary and provocative language meant to evoke acrimony and cast aspersions on the integrity of the CPP generally and those within its hierarchy, specifically”.

He said further: “Given that Benoni accuses no one directly, he thereby, unfairly accuses everyone indirectly. I find it unacceptable that such strongly worded letter, laced with threats to the survival of this collaboration is void of any specific details – he points to no specific provision in the document that he claims is altered, does not say when he believes it was altered, does not say who are the ‘nefarious’ individuals amongst us in the hierarchy that altered it but yet invites the CPP through your Office and the Liberian people, to embark on a wild-goose chase.”

The ANC Political Leader asserted that the Urey revelation amounts to “most inappropriate use of our time, resources, and the time and resources of the people we promised to serve diligently and more thoughtfully. We cannot and must not run the CPP on mere gossips and rumors.”

He used the letter to call on the CPP Chairperson to encourage Mr. Benoni Urey to provide the necessary specifics of his claims because in the absence of any such specifics and it only intended to evoke acrimony and that CPP must not allow it to.

Cumming wrote: “Should our colleague choose to provide the necessary information to warrant serious consideration, I urge your good offices to first engage the Legal Team on the validity of those specific claims, out of respect for the fact that they were clothed with the authority to amend the Framework and produced the final copy.

“Based on the outcome of such engagement and if warranted, institute a speedy investigation through our existing dispute resolution mechanisms. There is absolutely no reason, except for one best known to our colleague, to skip these processes and write the National Elections Commission (NEC) as suggested by him when the Framework document filed at the NEC with their official stamp and signature, is in the possession of the Liberty Party as turned over by the ANC/CPP SG at the beginning of LP’s chairmanship. That copy can be easily compared to the lawyers’ final copy reflective of our input and this matter be laid to rest.”

He advised Chairperson Lawrence not to accept any attempt aimed at lowering of standards in the CPP by acting on admitted rumors or gossips.

“This cannot be the quality of leadership we promised, for the CPP and the country,” Mr. Cummings said further.

“Therefore, I am constrained to urge more serious and thoughtful considerations of actions by members and leaders of our collaboration. This will rightly impose on us the need to show increased respect for ourselves, our colleagues, our fellow partisans, non-partisans who believe in what we are trying to accomplish for the changes we need in our country, those who voluntarily put their valuable time and expertise at our disposal free of charge, and especially, it will guarantee an unfailing commitment in the quality of examples that are indicative of the better alternative we promised Liberians to be.”

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