I am told to vote him

By Sheikh Al moustapha Kouyateh

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia
March 27, 2017



Knowing that he doesn't regard our constitution 

I am told to elect him
After he conceded failure by his previous retirement 
I am told he's the Chosen One
Because he once claimed to have been the anointed one

I am told to denounce the presence
But the future is picking the legs of the present to balance herself
I am told that the Present is a failure 
While the head of the winner denounced the future for the present

I am told that my cradle is honored as Vice Running mate
Knowing that it is only an attempt to woo us
How possible can you refer to the dead as the living?
Knowing that he breathes no more
What is it to celebrate?
When your intent is seasoned with deceit

I am told to vote him
That he has alienated his previous stances-
By seeking favor in religious and tribal supremacy
This is how one of us was earmarked as Vice running mate
An echo that pulled my ancestors to follow him
Today, he has chosen the unqualified as the available

I am told to vote him
Knowing that he had negotiated as deputy to the present
When the present rejected him
He came back as the black colonist 
Dividing the united because of his denial
If I am to vote
I would rather vote the failure that's crowned by the so-called winners
If I am to pledge an allegiance 
I would rather pledge it to the known devil
Than the wolf in sheep clothing
You are one of the best lawyers 
Knowing that you dare abide by the Code of Conduct 
You are the best opposition leader
While your Chairman belies in the comfort of the criticized
I have been known as a foreigner 
As others are presumed as Zogos
While majority are seen insignificant
But you want us vote you
Can you please give us your platform? 
If it defers from the present 
I will surely vote as my constitutional rights dictate 

About The Author:
Sheikh Al moustapha Kouyateh 
Former Senatorial Candidate 
Montserrado County. 2014

Kandajaba Zoebohn ZOEDJALLAH
Don´t vote for him. He is a traitor. He turned his back on the whole nation while he enjoyed "sweet"!!! Just the other day, he said "Ellen was this, she was that". Today, read what he is saying in/on FPA that "Ellen is giving him all the support". DO NOT VOTE FOR HIM!HE WAS A FOOT SOLDIER FOR ELLEN´S BRUTAL WAR!
Kandajaba Zoebohn ZOEDJALLAH at 06:13AM, 2017/03/28.
Kandajaba Zoebohn ZOEDJALLAH


Jay Wion · Works at Amtrak Washington, DC

MY TURN: As President of the Liberian Senate, Vice President Joseph Boikai is strategically positioned to know of all pending legislations for passage by the Liberian Senate and the entire Liberian Legislature. This part of hid ofgifial duties. What concerns did he raise when the Wologizi Mountain iron ore for Sable Mining "only" law was passed by the Senate on September 16, 2010? Especially so when Wologizi is located in the VP'S home County of Lofa.

What did he know and when did he know it since the new law favoring Sable only had to be signed by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and its expected economic impact meant to be felt in Lofa? He is the most senior official in government from Lofa County. It would be interesting to hear his take on this unfolding corruption saga. Just a thought and not a sermon.

It was the ruling Unity Party that declared "war on corruption," and if Chairman Sherman and others are found guilty of the charges against them and sent to jail , then it should boost their party's chances with bragging rights of being strong against corruption during the 2017 presidential campaign, and increases Boakai's popularity. The Vice President will do good if he calls for the prosecution of all implicated in GAC audits and other presidential task forces. But if the trial of the accused becomes a travesty of justice, a kangaroo trial, then kiss the Unity Party goodbye at the polls.

Jerry Wehtee Wion, Journalist and Political Commentator, Washington, DC, USA

Like · Reply · 5 · May 27, 2016 4:20am
Kandajaba Zoebohn ZOEDJALLAH at 06:21AM, 2017/03/28.
Sylvester Moses
“He came back as the black colonist
Dividing the united because of his denial
…I would rather pledge it to the known devil
You are one of the best lawyers …
Knowing that you dare abide by the Code of Conduct
You are the best opposition leader.”

The above from the brilliantly - written free verse dramatic monologue of Sheikh Al Moustapha Kouyateh suggests that the “you” referred to by the unidentified speaker isn’t VP Boakai. Rather, the description fits to the tee LP leader Brumskine. The tell - tale signs are: “black colonist’, “one of the best lawyers”, “dare abide by the Code of Conduct” (most likely for violating that law by choosing a running mate caught in one of its talons), and, of course, the final line, “You are the best opposition leader”.

I say “unidentified speaker” since there isn’t textual evidence that both “speaker” and poet are one, and the same person. Nineteenth Century English poet Robert Browning finessed the technique in his classic, “My Last Duchess”. And though a matter of form, what impresses me most is how Kouyateh’s structural dexterity allows him to reinforce meaning through unmistakable allusions, and other images, therefore, elevating a seemingly political poem to soar to symbolic heights.

A discerning Liberian reader may even sense a sort of pending deja vu. Why not? Perhaps, for instance, that EJS (the backbone behind Brumskine) could have advised him to find a running mate in the same setting from whence she tantalized the unassuming and kind - hearted General Quinwonkpa to stoke a burning forest fire that four years later would consume somebody from every clan and community in the country.

Needless to say, we can’t pretend that was a fairy tale for it is a truism that those who forget the lessons of history are condemned to repeat them.

Another reading pertains to the question: is “Dividing the united because of his denial” a reference to the divide and rule policy made possible by the refusal of all native tribes to embrace Islam before the coming of our founding fathers? It would seem so for that religion was the unifier in sub-Saharan Africa until the fall of the Songhai Empire. Anyway, the meaning of a poem is mostly in the eyes of the reader. The poem reveals itself with the help of what each reader brings to it. Hence, what the writer believes is his or her “meaning” has no bearing on the reader’s judgment, after all.

In other words, there is no single correct meaning in the interpretation and appreciation of literature.

Nonetheless, neither Kouyateh nor I is unaware of the fact that the division of Liberians along ethnic or religious voting groups will be a barricade to achieving reconciliation, long – term stability, and genuine peace. So no one, by any stretch, will advocate such a non – starter. But the question that comes to mind remains, can the dominant elites of the status quo of divide and rule, such as EJS, wean themselves off a disposition that has perennially been so beneficial?

One is hoping, however, that we can coexist, and equally share political power on a land fate of history, or providence, joined our forefathers together like Siamese twins.

Thank you, Sheikh Al Moustapha Kouyateh, I love poetry, and this is a successful poem. In this poem, you've portrayed in six stanzas of forty - two lines Liberia's past, present, and future; a feat less skilled writers would only achieve in an anthology of poems, or volumes of books. Unquestionably, writing is about life, be it factual or fictional, and politics happens to be man’s main preoccupation. No wonder, then, that the late great African American novelist James Baldwin echoed the ancients with his laconic observation: “Writing is a political instrument”.

Sylvester Moses at 02:41PM, 2017/03/28.
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