By Othello T. Lincoln
MONROVIA – Except for tons of clumsy jibes being thrown at his main political rivals and the spewing out of a bunch of lies, incumbent President George Weah, has got no real campaign message based upon which electorate could be wooed to cast their votes for his re-election later this year on 10 October, according to multiple political pundits.
The pundits, who prefer remaining anonymous for this report, have observed that throughout his campaign trail across the country, where he has visited so far, President Weah, instead of campaigning on his record, is rather throwing jibes at his main political rivals, former Vice President Joseph Boakai of the Unity Party and the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) presidential candidate, Alexander Cummings of the Alternative National Congress (ANC).
“He’s on a campaign of lies,” one of the political pundits said of President Weah, whom the pundit accused of lacking innovation at coining for himself an appellation to match the mantra for the campaign of his re-election bid.
The pundit charge Weah for claiming to be the “Real Fixer”, an appellation for his political rival Cummings of the CPP, to which he (Weah) has added the prefix real, and at another point, according to the pundits, the President calls himself the “Real Rescuer”, the title coined by Weah’s fierce political contender, Boakai of the UP, with the Liberian leader again, just affixing the prefix real thereto.
Calling himself after the coined appellations of his rivals, according to the pundits, shows the lack of innovation on the part of Weah, indicating that such is so because, the Liberian leader has absolutely no sellable plan for Liberians to buy into and vote him for a second six-year term.
Weah and his administration, has failed miserably in the regime’s first term, according to the pundits, who claim that for nearly six-years, the CDC-led government, to the detriment of the country’s economy and vast majority of its citizens, has allegedly indulged in rampant corruption underpinned by self-enrichment by officials of the government including the President himself.
Recently, former VP Boakai’s campaign head of research, Martin K.N. Kollie, in a write-up, disclosed that he was exposing President Weah, for allegedly telling lies that under his administration, medical doctors were being paid the staggering amount of US$2,000 each, as salary.
Based upon what he termed a lie regarding what their actual remunerations are under the Weah-led government, Martin called on doctors, Pharmacists, and Nurses in the country not to vote him (Weah).
“Liberians, especially health practitioners, must vote out GMW [George Manneh Weah] for lying about just everything,” he emphasized.
Quoting the Liberian leader, Martin indicated that President Weah has allegedly been misinforming Liberians on his campaign trail that “No medical doctor makes less than US$2,000 per month under my watch.”
“This is another LIE. Must they LIE about just everything? The lies of this footballing president can be akin to his loot,” Martin indicated.
Contrary to Weah’s assertion, Martin claims licensed Medical Doctors serving during the CDC regime make US$1,498 each, as salary, while a licensed Pharmacist’s actual pay is US$400.
He averred that incoming Medical Doctors make US$606, and Medical Doctors serving on internship basis collect US$900, as pay.
Pharmacist on internship and Anesthetist Nurses make US$500 and US$455 respectively, according to Martin.
He pointed out that in this year’s National Budget, the budget for President Weah’s wife, First Lady Clar Weah, is US$700,000, an amount Martin claims is almost equivalent to what 63 licensed Medical Doctors and Pharmacists receive annually, as salaries, which he puts at US$842,758.68.
Using as his reliance, Page 13 of Liberia’s Approved National Budget for 2023, Martin observed that within 24 months, in fiscal years 2022-23 National Budget, Liberia, which he described as a poor country, appropriated a budget of US$11.2 million for both President Weah and his wife, Clar.
“They came to STEAL and not to SERVE. Do you know how many licensed doctors can be paid with US$11.2 million every year? 623 licensed doctors. We could also pay 2,333 licensed pharmacists with this huge amount every year,” averred Martin, who added, “But Weah and Clear gave themselves such a whopping budget while millions of Liberians remain poor, jobless, hungry, and dejected. Their action is a mixture of greed, corruption, cruelty, and insensitivity.”
He wants supporters of President Weah, especially members of his political party the CDC to know that the Liberian leader is lying to them about paying a doctor US$2,000 every month.
When Smart News Liberia (SNL) contacted the Liberian presidency for a response, deputy presidential press secretary, Smith Toby, intoned that what President Weah is telling Liberians on his campaign trail can be determined to be truthful or a falsehood only by the electorate, noting that it is elections year, and the message one takes on the field will determine whether you get the votes or not.
“Every political person or political party that is out and about, they are making their case. So, if Martin Kollie and others think that the President is throwing jibes, or he’s campaigning on falsehood, let them and their standard bearers and campaign teams carry their message,” said Toby, who added, “So, we are equally following their message and they are following our message. The voters will determine who’s telling the truth.”