Weah’s Claims on the Presidency Undermine the Peace and Security of Liberia


By Winsley S. Nanka, CPA


The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia
December 13, 2005


The statement attributed to Mr. George Manneh Weah, the defeated presidential candidate of the Congress for Democratic Change, (CDC) on November 11, 2005 that he is the “winner” of the November 8, 2005 presidential run-off election undermines the peace and security of Liberia. Followers of Mr. Weah have presumably used his declaration as a pretext to attack state security officers in Monrovia. Mr. Weah’s declaration and the subsequent attacks on law enforcement by his followers caused pandemonium in Monrovia and its environs. Although, Mr. Weah and his followers denied he made claims on the presidency of Liberia, and they attacked state security personnel, however, given the history of Mr. Weah’s followers, it is difficult to imagine they did not attack law enforcement personnel.

While Mr. Weah has the constitutional right to disagree with the results of the November 8, 2005 run-off election, the proper venue for the redress of his disagreement is the court system of Liberia. Mr. Weah has reportedly taken his grievances for adjudication to the judicial system of Liberia. He needs to wait for the court to decide the merit of his allegations instead of making statements that undoubtedly encouraged his followers to undermine the peace and security of Liberia.

In addition, does Mr. Weah recognize that any statement he makes outside of the court system while his compliant is being adjudicated could injure his case? Why he is not deferring all comments to his attorneys?

It is regrettable that Mr. Weah has chosen the path that would lead Liberia towards political instability despite appeal by world leaders, Liberians of various political persuasions, and diverse socio-economic background to accept the results of the November 8, 2005 presidential vote. The popular appeal for Mr. Weah to accept the results of the presidential run-off election is based on the fact that the general and presidential elections met international standard. In other words, the level of fraud alleged by Mr. Weah and his followers does not rise to the level that would cause the results of the November 8, 2005 presidential election to be overturned.

In a recently published article, I cautioned Mr. Weah and his followers to be mindful of the adverse consequences of their actions. I indicated that the Liberian people have suffered a great deed, and do not want any actions that would subject them to more adversity. Therefore, Mr. Weah has the responsibility to caution his supporters against any actions that would inflame the fragile security situation in Liberia.

Mr.Weah’s failure to adhere to my warning and those of many other Liberians show that Mr. Weah and his hard core followers are not interested in peace and stability in Liberia. It also indicates that they do not believe in the democratic process as a medium to resolve political disputes. Mr. Weah must remember that political instability in Liberia affects the ability of the country to move forward as a peaceful and democratic state. Mr. Weah and his followers must also recognize that there will be no viable socio-economic development in Liberia in the absence of peace and security.

However, it is not too late for Mr. Weah to redeem himself. What he simply needs to do is publicly renounce his claims on the presidency of Liberia and accept the results of November 8, 2005 run-off presidential vote that declared Mrs. Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf the winner. If he fails to do so, and he continues to make statements that create chaos in Liberia, he should be held personally accountable.

In conclusion, Mr. Weah, his followers and all those that may be interested in the presidency of Liberia need to wait for next six years after which they may present themselves to the Liberian voters. There is no need to create political instability in Liberia to achieve their political objective. Mr. Weah must give up his claims on the presidency of Liberia because he did not win the run-off presidential election based on the November 8, 2005 results. Consequently, it will be unfair to award him the presidency of Liberia.