Monrovia – Like many concerned partisans of the ruling Unity Party, its former chairman, Cllr. Varney Sherman, is also not sure if President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is lending any form of support to Vice President Joseph Boakai’s presidential bid, but says the party does not need her support anyway.
“In 2014 she did not support me when I was contesting in Cape Mount to become Senator, but yet I won by 60% and more, so it’s possible that Joe Boakai could win by more than 60 percent.”
“I cannot confirm or deny whether she supports the Party” Cllr. Varney Sherman, Former Chair, Unity Party
Cllr. Sherman is, however, optimistic that the party would win the October 10 polls by more than 60 percent of votes.
“In 2014, she did not support me when I was contesting in Cape Mount to become Senator, but yet I won by 60% and more so it’s possible that Joe Boakai could win by more than 60 percent. I cannot confirm or deny whether she supports the Party,” Cllr. Sherman said.
He made the assertions in an interview with journalists on Monday in Monrovia.
As former chairman of the Unity Party, Cllr. Sherman believes the Party stands a very good chance in these elections suggesting that they could probably win on the first ballot.
“From our survey, we stand a very good chance and there is a high probability that we could win on the first ballot.”
President Sirleaf has iterated on several occasions that she supports her Vice President to be her successor.
However, she has not made a public spectacle of her pronouncement, though elections campaign started a month ago.
Recently, Presidential Press Secretary Mr. Jerolinmek Piah dispelled rumors that the President had shifted her support to opposition Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) led by soccer legend George Weah, who had allegedly assured her to protection from any form of prosecution after she shall have left office.
Wounds Still Fresh
Cllr. Sherman’s feud with President Sirleaf, reignited a few years ago. Close associates of Cllr. Sherman and President Sirleaf believe that old wounds were dug into after Cllr. Sherman trumpeted the President’s failure to commit to fighting corruption in an oration delivered by him on Liberia’s 166th Independence Celebrations in Bomi County.
Cllr. Sherman slammed the President for what he described as a dismal presidency, citing the president’s lack of effective public relations as the reasons her accomplishments are not known.
Said Sherman: “I am however concerned that enough information about these achievements and accomplishments has not flowed to the Liberian public at large and too many people, even within Monrovia and its immediate environs don’t know enough about these achievements and accomplishments.”
“The absence of information to the Liberian people about these achievements and accomplishments is a serious deficiency that must be remedied immediately.”
Added Cllr. Sherman: “Even after two circles of general and presidential elections, the social and development challenges which face our people are still very daunting; some of our people appear to give up all hopes for the betterment of their situations during their lifetimes.”
‘Diabolical & Wicked’ Allegations
Currently being prosecuted for corruption in for his involvement in the alleged Sable Mining bribery saga which was unearthed by Global Witness, Cllr. Sherman says he would stop at nothing in proving his innocence and reveal the truth in the case.
He described the allegations as diabolical, wicked and unsubstantiated.
“I will not relent until the truth is revealed. If somebody will pay for it, it will be between their God and my God.
He asked: “Have you ever asked yourself: in Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s Government how the making of laws went through?
Do you know any group called the International Senior lawyers Program that had people here assisting with the drafting of law?
Do you know that the law they said I bribed people to change the EU, USAID and the International Senior Lawyers were involved in that change?
Have any of you been able to talk to the Public Procurement and Concession Commission to ask whether I had anything to do with this law?
Have you read the letter the President wrote the legislature to tell them about all the organizations that helped her in changing the law?
You haven’t done that; you have swallowed the Global Witness report,” he asserted sternly.”
Fighting for His ‘Reputation’
Responding to whether he is bitter with the President, Cllr. Sherman asked in return – “If you were me, will you smile? I spent years in this country trying to build my reputation as a lawyer and one night, one moment, some British boy destroys it.”
In a high spirited tone, the Cape Mount County Senator told journalists how he was invited by President Sirleaf into a merger as standard Bearer of the Liberia Action Party at which time he claimed to have raised millions of dollars to support President Sirleaf 2011 campaign.
“Is this how to pay back somebody who worked for you? Wouldn’t you even call him to say a Global Witness has raised this report and we need to talk about it?
President Sirleaf told me when I raised the issue on the Bumper Show, she said, she sent me a text message and I didn’t respond so she decided to do it her own way, so I will do it my own way.”
Recounting some of the sacrifices he made for President Sirleaf he named the simple majority for the legislative seat he won at the Supreme Court after a failed referendum.
He said if wasn’t because of his stance, elections for legislative seat would have only been won by the absolute majority, which he said it could have cost government millions of United States dollars on run-off elections.
“Were you in this country when the TRC brought out its report?
Am I not the one who had a press conference at the then Liberia Action Party (LAP) headquarters in Monrovia promising to stand up for her?
Do you remember that they challenged her on the ten years residency clause and I defended her at the Supreme Court? God will be my Judge.”
FrontPageAfrica Newspaper – Politics