Monrovia, Liberia – The Coalition for Democratic Change’s National Youth League has characterized Senator Amara Konneh’s admonition to President Boakai to grant majority cabinet positions to residents of Lofa and Bong Counties as a divisive religious and tribal card.
On his official Facebook page, the Gbarpolu County Senator recently shared a figure regarding the number of ministerial appointments made by President Joseph Boakai. The report stated that the Liberian leader has not yet selected a single Muslim for a position in his ministry.
The National Chairperson of the Coalition for Democratic Change Youth League, Emmanuel Mulbah Johnson, expressed alarm over the fresh wave of divisive speech demonstrated by Senator Amara Konneh in a press release released on Wednesday, February 7, 2024.
In his view, the legislator, a prominent figure in the Unity Party administration, is being indifferent to the needs of the local community and religious beliefs by casting doubt on the president’s most recent choice.
“Such a statement brings back painful memories of our dark past, when we had warring factions founded to defend specific religions and tribal and regional affiliations, such as the ULIMO-K, ULIMO-J, Lofa Defense Force, NPFL, and INPFL.”
The Youth League stressed that such an act by Senator Konneh of incitement as a religion and regional fuel are reckless noting that these are the main reasons that led the country into 14 years of civil unrest.
The Youth League believes that the Gbarpolu Senator, who is a former Finance Minister who hails from a religious group (Muslim), should be a man who endeavors to promote peace and unity but not to beat an early war drum by signaling out a specific group of religions or regions that have been overlooked for ministerial positions.
“We were concerned that Amara’s statement might offend the Kissi people or Lofains as well as make them feel threatened.”
The CDC Youth League Chair disclosed that the regional and tribal divisive rhetoric is creeping gradually, referencing a statement made by Nimba County Senator Prince Y. Johnson on the same day as Amara Konneh in which the lawmaker attacked President Boakai for reportedly ignoring the citizens of his county during the appointments.
Johnson said it is saddening that a man who participated in Liberia’s heinous crimes including the murdering of a sitting president, continues to participate in Liberia’s political space at the disadvantage of those who saw the horrible war days and are demanding justice.
Emmanuel Johnson said this is concerning, and Senator Amara Konneh’s attempt to create a sense of division by sounding the war drum and debating which tribe or religion is more viable than the other under the Boakai-led administration suggests a partnership with PYJ similar to the ULIMO days, which wouldn’t be strange to Liberians.
The chair of the youth league highlighted that Senator Amara Konneh will be held accountable if there is any kind of impending tribal or religious violence, claiming that he is the cause of it.