LP’s Response To President Sirleaf’s Diatribe, As Delivered By Information Minister, Mr. Lenn Eugene Nagbe

The opposition Liberty Party (LP) has sharply reacted to the Liberian Government statement read last Friday by Minister Lenn Eugene Nagbe during a press conference took serious exception to statement made by Liberty Party defeated presidential candidate, Cllr. Charles Walker Brumskine that President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf interfered to ensure the rigging of the October 10, 2017 general and presidential elections.

He further noted that, “The Government also rejects claims by Cllr. Brumskine that President Sirleaf protested the outcome of the 1985 elections by bringing war upon Liberia and its people,” Minister Nagbe in a rather serious posture told journalists.

“Cllr. Brumskine needs to be reminded or aware that making baseless and reckless accusations about a fair and transparent process that was witnessed by serval party agents, local and international actors and acclaimed to be credible is a demonstration of desperation and dishonesty which this country does not deserve,” he noted.

He further pointed out that the Government of Liberia believes that this conduct of Cllr. Brumskine, “Is simply the rants of a sore and selfish loser who is so blinded by ego and arrogance that even after 12 years of rejection by the voters, he is unable to accept that he is not the presidential choice of the Liberian people,” Nagbe blasted.

In the Liberty Party response to Minister said, “The attention of the Liberty Party (LP) is drawn to President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s response to the November 3, 2017 BBC interview of the Standard Bearer of the Liberty Party, Charles Walker Brumskine, through her Information Minister, the Honorable Lenn Eugene Nagbe. President Sirleaf’s statement is not only a dishonor to the Presidency of our nation, but also a total disregard for the loss lives of the hundreds of thousands of Liberians, and the destruction our country, in pursuit of her two-fold quest: to get rid of President Samuel K. Doe, and to gain political power in Liberia.

During the BBC interview, in response to a question regarding perceived national instability as a result of LP’s legal action against the conduct of the October 10, 2017 Elections, Cllr. Brumskine assured Liberians that the LP’s challenge of the results of the October 10, 2017 elections, which were riddled with gross irregularities, massive fraud, and constitutional violations, would not be like the 1985 elections, when then Senatorial candidate, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, refused to take her seat in the Senate that she is said to have won, but chose to conspire with the likes of Charles Taylor to inflict upon the people of Liberia a horrible Civil War. He noted that the LP’s legal action in no way represents any threat to national stability, but rather sought to strengthen Liberia’s democracy and peace.

Cllr. Brumskine reiterated his commitment to ensuring that LP’s action is, and will continue to be, one that is consistent with the Rule of Law in Liberia. The LP Leader drew a clear dichotomy, using historical facts and evidence, between the politics of President Sirleaf, who saw the barrel of the gun as a way of righting the wrongs of society, and Liberia’s new breed of politicians, who are prone to fostering democracy through open challenge and utilization of the justice system. The LP reiterates the commitment made by Cllr. Brumskine in assuring Liberians that no one will lose his/her life, and not a single drop of blood will be spilled, as a result of LP’s disagreement with the results of the fraud-ridden elections,

In her attempt to absolve herself of her involvement in election fraud, President Sirleaf forgot to mention that one of her office staff, Mr. Amos Siebo, was caught with a NEC voter ID card producing materials.[1] She forgot to mention the correlation between “missing” NEC voter ID Card producing materials and the fraud that has marred the 2017 electoral process, thereby necessitating the cases filed by LP with the NEC and the Supreme Court of Liberia. She forgot to draw the line between these actions and the propensity to foster conflict in Liberia.

Rather, she elected to describe the elections process as fair and transparent, even though several political parties including the Alternative National Congress, the All Liberia Party and the Unity Party, President Sirleaf’s very own Party, and one which holds a spot in the runoff elections, have described the process as fraudulent and have filed the necessary papers to join LP’s legal pursuit of justice. Instead of focusing her message to the Liberian people during this time on the numerous acts of elections rigging and voters’ disenfranchisement that has marred the integrity of the electoral process, President Sirleaf chose to attack Cllr. Brumskine, in an attempt to cover the exposed feet of the dead of Liberia’s Civil War, whom she believes are buried in the sand of impunity.

Some of the issues that President Sirleaf should be focused and providing answers to the Liberian people on include:

  1. The contract for the printing of Voter Registration Forms (VRF) was awarded to a company, Inkript of Lebanon. According to the Public Procurement and Concessions Commission (PPCC), this company should not have been awarded the contract because it did not meet the requirements. However, the decision of the PPCC was overridden by a higher political decision. Who was that higher power?
  1. The NEC ordered 4,181,500 Voter Registration Forms (VRF) with Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) from Inkript. Why would NEC order this quantity if only half of Liberia’s 4.5 million voters were eligible to register as voters and only about 2.1 million are said to have actually registered?
  • A direct consequence of having twice as many VRF as the number of persons eligible to register or who actually registered to vote, provided the environment for Amos Siebo, a staff of President Sirleaf’s office, and many others unknown, to be given some of the excess VRF, from which they were able to make hundreds of thousands voter registration cards, have them distributed all over the country, and used to obtain ballots to vote on Elections Day.
  1. The VRF printed by Inkript, the same company PPCC had advised against awarding the contract, were substandard, and consequently the Voter Registration Cards could not be read by the scanner machine, which the NEC had purchased from DRS, UK. Why would NEC accept these faulty VRFs into the process?
  1. The NEC is required, by law, to publish the Final Registration Roll (FRR) of voters, in order to allow registered voters the opportunity to verify that their name is properly placed on the FRR. This was never done and as a result no one knew who were or were not on the FRR.
  1. Persons with voter registration cards issued by the likes of the Amos Siebo were authorized by the NEC to vote, although their names were not on the “FRR.” At some Polling Places there were no “FRR,” but note books, in which certain names were recorded, and only those were allowed to vote.
  • Madam President cited the Chairman of the NEC, Jerome Korkoya, and Electoral Magistrates from all over the country to her house, prior to the elections, to give her final instructions. When the meeting came to light, Madam President claimed that the purpose of her meeting was to “ensure free and fair elections.” Wow! If President Sirleaf was really concerned about free and fair elections, one can only wonder, why has an administrative investigation not been conducted to determine whom at the NEC gave the election materials to Amos Siebo?

[1] https://www.frontpageafricaonline.com/index.php/politics/3478-breaking-news-sirleaf-s-staff-in-fraudulent-liberia-voters-registration-exercise

  • Madam President is aware of the incidents of electoral fraud that have been made public—the covers of ballot boxes that have been found, following the illegal opening of ballot boxes by Presiding Officers; Presiding Officers that were caught with pre-marked ballots in their possessions; a Presidential Candidate receiving 1,109 votes at Polling Places that should have had not more than 500 registered voters; Polling Places that should have had not more than 500 registered voters allotted 2,250 ballot papers; ballot boxes were reopened after polling had closed, ballots counted, and ballot boxes sealed, only to perpetrate fraud, and the list goes on. Yet President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf contends that the October 10, 2017 Presidential and Representatives Elections were free and fair.
  1. Madam President on September 21, 2017, during a political rally of the Liberty Party, authorized by the NEC and approved by the Liberian National Police, in Saniquellie, Nimba County, members of the CDC invaded our rally and brutally stabbed three members of Liberty Party, why have you not ensured that the culprits are brought to justice? Painfully, Police Director Gregory Coleman told Liberians on October 23, 2017, via OK FM 99.5, to the effect that some high-ranking officials of CDC are to be prosecuted for commission of the crimes, according to findings from the Police investigation. Sadly, Director Coleman said that it is not feasible to do so now, considering the current security environment. The question we ask, Madam President, where is the Report? Why has it not been made public? Do we have some people above the law because of ‘current security environment’? Where is JUSTICE for our members that were stabbed and our properties that were damaged?

But, instead and in consonance with the regular display of the abuse of political office that has characterized this administration, President Sirleaf thought it wise to rain disparaging comments about our Standard Bearer, attempting to vindicate herself of any wrongdoing in our country’s bitter past.

In her attempt to debunk Cllr. Brumskine on her war records, starting with her refusal to occupy the senatorial seat she had won in 1985 Elections, she claims that she declined occupation of the seat because she did not want to work in a dictatorial regime under President Samuel K. Doe. However, she fails to recall that she contested for the senatorial seat in the very same election where Mr. Doe was a Presidential candidate. Did she not know when she was contesting that Mr. Doe, one of the candidates vying for the presidency, could have emerged as president?

[1] https://blojlu.wordpress.com/2010/08/01/an-open-letter-to-harry-yuan-ellen-johnson-sirleaf-amos-sawyer-boima-fahnbulleh-and-others/

The fact of the matter is that Madam President and her cohorts already had a plan to perfect their evil design against President Doe, in total disregard of the impact to the Liberian people. This plot is revealed in an open letter from Tarloh Munah Quiwonkpa, the late Thomas Quiwonkpa’s widow, to President Sirleaf in which she seeks answers about her husband’s death resulting from the 1985 failed coup attempts against President Doe, in which she states that Sirleaf was one of the organizers.[1] When that plan failed, she absconded the country, solicited funding, teamed up with disgruntled elements and provided financial support to support Charles Taylor and waged a ferocious war against the Liberian people, all in the name of “revolution” – a war that resulted in the total ravaging and debilitation of our nation for 14 years.

At the end of this, the very Ellen Johnson Sirleaf who claims to have not wanted the senatorial seat in President Doe’s “dictatorial” administration in 1985 turned around in 2003 and contested to head the Interim Government, and solicited the support of the same rebel leaders who were responsible for the many years of civil conflict in Liberia. Even the rebel factions rejected her bid for the Interim Government Chairmanship in favor of the “politically neutral” candidate Charles Gyude Bryant.[2] They knew too well the real Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

She describes Cllr. Brumskine as being desperate for power. This could not be farther from the truth, as evidenced by his commitment to remain constructively engaged with the democratic and judicial process and to abide by the ruling of the Supreme Court in this matter. Is this the character of a desperate man? No, Madam President! This is the character of an agent for constructive change. In your quest to label one as desperate, perhaps you should look in your own direction and examine your perennial tormenting of Liberians, growing out of your naked quest for political power. Yet even after having achieved that power, you still find it difficult to transform yourself and gain legitimacy in the sight of the Liberian people.

You alleged that Cllr. Brumskine has been rejected three times by the Liberian people and this is the reason why he has filed the “frivolous” case. Again, Madam President, this is not true. LP’s contestation of the results of these elections and its urge to see it through to its logical conclusion, is intended to mark a watershed between your ingrained history of cheating in elections and a new era when Liberians will truly see their decision taken at the polls reflected in the results that are announced. You will recall your own confession of how you used mothers to steal their children’s voting cards in the 2005 elections.

You chose to purposely misinform the public about linkages between Cllr. Brumskine and the civil crisis. Yet, it is you who stands accused of going rogue and soliciting funding when the Association for Constitutional Democracy in Liberia (ACDL) decided to stop its support of Charles Taylor’s efforts in Liberia, after learning of his true intent. It is you who is accused of being one of the founding members of the National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL), the parent group to the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) that caused havoc in Sierra Leone resulting in the death and maiming of several Sierra Leoneans. It is you who is known to have provided the first $10,000 to the RUF, which you would later claim that you believed was a donation towards a humanitarian effort.[3]

It is you who, self-admittedly, supported Charles Taylor in the war that resulted in the death of hundreds of thousands of Liberians. It is you who is described in the Truth and Reconciliation Report as one of “the most prominent political leaders and financiers of different warring factions and armed groups, by their conduct, leadership, finances, and support, actions or inactions, are responsible for the commission of gross human rights violations, international humanitarian law violations, international human rights law, war crimes, and egregious domestic law violations” and “barred from holding public office, elected or appointed, for a period of thirty (30) years.[4] It is you who instructed Charles Taylor in 1990 on BBC to “Level Monrovia and we will rebuild it”, a statement made in total disregard of the fact that you could not give back any of the many lives that were lost and one that you would later falsely recount, replacing Monrovia with “Executive Mansion”. It is you who the victims of the Sierra Leonean war have condemned and vowed to sue once she leaves office.[5]

We could go on and on about your war mongering history. But, we simply put forth to you, Madam President, that it is you who has the verifiable record of having had direct involvement in Liberia’s civil crisis spanning several decades, and not Cllr. Brumskine, as you have claimed.

It is important for you to remember, Madam President, that our country is at a critical crossroad. It takes a leader with a firmly built character to propel us through these difficult times. We find such leadership in the person of Charles W. Brumskine. That is why, in the face of all of the provocation from you and the NEC, he is demonstrating that Liberia must come first in all that we say and do. Cllr. Brumskine has made a commitment that LP’s rejection of the fraudulent election results, and its ensuing legal case, will not produce an extra-constitutional action that could lead to the spilling of innocent blood. Even more importantly, his actions have shown his commitment to these words. That’s the hallmark of good leadership. And for that, LP fully supports the entire context of Cllr. Brumskine’s BBC interview, convinced that the contents thereof represent the undiluted truths about your checkered history of fermenting instability and blood-shed in the body politic of our nation.

[1] http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/22/world/interim-liberian-government-head-named.html

[1] http://theliberiandialogue.org/2014/05/16/woewiyus-an-open-letter-to-madam-ellen-johnson-sirleaf/

[1] Truth and Reconciliation Commission Volume II: Consolidated Final Report June 30, 2009

[1] http://gnnliberia.com/2017/09/26/sierra-leones-war-victims-plan-sue-liberias-president-ellen-johnson-sirleaf/

One only has to read “The Fist of Machiavelli” by John Milton Greaves, a childhood friend of yours, to understand your true diabolical, manipulative, cunning and bitter nature that has fueled your quest for political power by any means necessary, including war, bloodshed and murder. In a classic manifestation of the Machiavellian Theory, you walked upon 250 thousand skulls of our fellow Liberians to enter the Executive Mansion.  It is no wonder that today you do not care what becomes of Liberia upon your exit from the helm of political power. It comes as no surprise, given your historical track record that, even on the heel of your departure, you are managing the transition so terribly. In an electoral process that could have provided you a legacy of a smooth transfer of presidential authority to another administration, you have once again managed to entangle yourself in a scheme of fraud with the National Elections Commission (NEC). As the old adage goes, “a leopard can not change its spots”.

As to the Honorable Minister of Information, Proverbs 28:1-6 says it all: “The wicked flee when no one pursues them, but the righteous are as bold as a lion.When a land does wrong, it has many princes, but when the ruler is a man of understanding and knowledge, its stability endures.A poor man who oppresses and exploits the lowly is like a sweeping rain, which leaves no food. Those who set aside the law [both of God and man] praise the wicked. But those who keep the law [both of God and man] struggle with them. Evil men do not understand justice, but they who long for and seek the Lord understand it fully. Better is the poor who walks in his integrity, than he who is crooked and two-faced though he is rich.”

The peace loving citizens of this country have worked hard and come a long way from the dark days of civil war and have no desire or intention to return to that place. No amount of your twisting of the truth will change that. They have waited for twelve long years to peacefully and democratically get rid of President Election Johnson Sirleaf, in person or through your surrogates, and nothing will change that!

God bless the people and save the nation!

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About Cholo Brooks 12197 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.