Sen. Grupee: ‘Impossible’ for Prince Johnson to Support Weah

GANTA, Nimba – Amid speculations that Sen. Prince Johnson may choose to endorse the Coalition for Democratic Change in the second round of the presidential elections, Nimba’s other senator, Thomas Grupee, has said such endorsement is “not possible.”

Grupee said he found it improbable that just after having harshly criticized CDC for violent acts in Nimba, Johnson would then support George Weah’s candidacy.

After a September 20 campaign disturbance involving CDC partisans and Liberty Party members, Johnson had repeated the refrain, “If CDC wins election in Liberia, there will be war.” Because of this, Grupee said he could not see the Movement for Democracy and Reconstruction standard bearer coming back to support CDC.

“I see that to be impossible,” he added.

Grupee, who was ushered into government through Johnson’s influence on the ticket of Johnson’s former National Union for Democracy Progress, now supports Vice President Joseph Boakai of the Unity Party to succeed President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as the next president of Liberia.

During the first round of campaigning, Grupee called on Nimbaians to provide their support to Boakai.

“Today, we have to be a part of history making in Liberia – and that we have to make this decision to make sure that Nimba County remains relevant in the political arena of Liberia,” he had said then. “Today, I am calling on you to make your decision of electing Amb. [Joseph] Boakai on October 10 so that I can have the opportunity to sit with the president and advocate on your behalf.”

Grupee has again called on voters to see Boakai as the best choice for the Nov. 7 runoff elections.

“Amb. Boakai is the best person to bring about change to Liberia and I urge all citizens of Nimba County to support a government led by Joseph Boakai,” he said.

In the past two presidential elections, Johnson has lent his support to Unity Party, terming it as the “lesser evil,” however, rumors are suggesting he will support the Coalition for Democratic Change this time around.

Meanwhile, opposition political parties have been calling for a return to the ‘Ganta Declaration.’ On September 17, 2016, 16 opposition parties had met to start discussions to field a united ticket against Boakai’s Unity Party. The meeting was organized by Johnson and it was supposed to be followed by further discussions. However, those efforts to unite the opposition never materialized.

Featured photo by Arrington Ballah

A resident of Ganta, Nimba County, Arrington has a background working with credit unions and other organizations dedicated to rural finance.

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