Africa-Press – Liberia. President George Weah is “irredeemably corrupt, dangerously incompetent, and unchangeably irresponsible,” says Alexender Cummings in a speech denouncing the shaky start to the 2022 census, the conduct of which has been hindered by many challenges.
Cummings, who is eyeing a rematch with Weah in the 2023 presidential elections, says “Liberians everywhere deserve better than to continue to feel embarrassed and disgraced by the President’s lack of leadership and the monumental failure to “conduct the constitutionally-required Census, knowing its importance to our continued peace, security, democracy and development.”
“The President must also apologize to the nation for causing a holiday to be declared for the beginning of the conduct of the census, which led to the shutting down of businesses and disruptions to other forms of livelihoods for Liberians,” said Cummings, Standard Bearer of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP).
“Only to see the supposed beginning of the conduct of the census marred by protests across the country, lack of leadership, poor preparations, scandals, and general unreadiness, leading many to now reasonably conclude that the conduct of the Census has failed disastrously. It is a fiasco that is best ended now!”
He noted that the shameful scandals of stealing, abuse of offices and display of gross incompetence at the Liberia Institute -Geo Information Services, reflect the character and failures of the Weah-led government.
This situation, according to Cummings, is being further compounded by the continued lack of leadership by our vacationing President, at the expense of the failing image of the country and the unbearable suffering of the Liberian people.
“It is now safe to say that after 4 years of failing to conduct the Census, which should have been conducted in 2018, as demanded by the Constitution, the recent delayed attempt also cannot be conducted at this time. This is bad for our country not only in its constitutional violation but also in how it affects the constitutional legitimacy of the 2023 elections, its impact on deepening our cherished democracy, and how effectively we may be able to plan for the development of our country.
“Even worse, Liberians can now be excused for doubting that the National Housing and Population Census can and will be conducted under the current failed and corrupt leadership of both the LISGIS and the Weah administration,” Cummings said.
According to him, the Weah administration, who he accused of illegally enriching themselves, “while making life increasingly difficult for everyone,” does not care about the Liberian people.
“And so, this is not about a party or tribe or even counties and regions. The bad leadership of President Weah is affecting all of our people everywhere,” said Cummings.
President Weah, he said, is flying about in private jets paid for by the Liberian people while Liberians, including an 8-week old baby, are drowning in capsized canoes while traveling to their farms.
According to Cummings, Weah is also sleeping in the best hotels in other countries while many are sleeping in slums and going to bed hungry. He claimed in his statement that Weah is enjoying while Liberians are suffering, civil servants’ salaries are harmonized to as low as US$40 per month; the cost of living is rising; and people are not being paid on time!
“This is wicked,” he said. “This is not presidential leadership. It is self-seeking and an abuse of the trust of the Liberian people. We will end this in 2023, and give Liberians a chance to better their lives. Liberia is too rich for Liberians to be so poor!
“We are tired of telling this President what to do. We will not waste our time and that of our fellow citizens to call on President Weah to immediately suspend, if not dismiss, and investigate his friends and colleagues, including his Minister of Finance and all others involved in the looting and mismanagement of the country’s resources. Like many Liberians, I am convinced — and President Weah has shown — that he will not do that, and simply cannot do that.”
Cummings said as opposition they are therefore left to reasonably conclude that this is because the President is either involved in or benefits from the runaway stealing and looting of the country, led by members of his inner circles and closest friends.
However, Cummings said, President Weah cannot and will not act now, and does not excuse them from acting in 2024. He further stated that a Cummings administration will thoroughly audit and forcefully prosecute all of these ongoing scandals of financial dealings and stealing.
“We are determined to fight corruption wherever, and by whoever, without exception, fear or favor. And we are determined to do so to the fullest extent of the law,” Cummings said. “Hear me now: No one will get away with the stealing and looting of our country!”
He added, “Seeing the pains and neglect of our people every day, in a country God has blessed with so much natural wealth, compels us to fight corruption — and we will. We must end the stealing and serve our people with honesty and diligence.”
According to him, the Weah government must protect all of its citizens.
“President Weah, inform your goons: Let nothing untoward happen to that family,” Cummings warned, referring to reports of threats against the family of LISGIS whistleblower Alex Williams. “We have seen enough mysterious deaths and unsolved murders in our country already. We will not permit anymore!”