ECOWAS final plea to CDC to reverse boycott, issues threat
The West African sub regional bloc, ECOWAS has made “a final appeal” to Liberia’s main opposition CDC party of Winston Tubman to reverse its decision to boycott Tuesday presidential runoff election and it has issued a veil threat to opposition political leaders.
In a statement issued over the weekend, the ECOWAS Commission urged the CDC and all Liberian stakeholders to take part in the November 8 runoff, so as “not to miss this historic opportunity of consolidating democracy and peace in the country, and to actively participate in the 8 November poll.”
Describing Tubman's boycott decision as “unfortunate,” the sub-regional bloc said “it is intended to undermine the election and the democratic process that Liberians are striving hard to consolidate.”
In a meeting with the opposition leader earlier in Abuja, President Goodluck Jonathan and other ECOWAS authorities are said to have advised Tubman against boycotting the poll on grounds that “it was too late in the day, and quite against the relevant ECOWAS protocols for the CDC to demand changes that would require a consensual constitutional process of amending relevant electoral laws.”
The sub-regional bloc, that had twice deployed troops in Liberia to stop two civil wars in the past decades, then issued this threat to the CDC and other politicians:
“The Commission wishes once more to caution that political leaders and any individual or group of persons adjudged to be instigating their fellow citizens to violence will be held individually and collectively accountable for their actions.”
The United States has also said “it is deeply disappointed by the decision of the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) to boycott Liberia’s presidential run-off election on November 8.”
The US government debunked the CDC’s claim that the Octiber 11 first round of election was fraudulent saying it “is unsubstantiated.”
The US said it backed the ECOWAS position on developments in Liberia and that the November 8 election will go on, adding that the US will be joining the international community to send observers to monitor Tuesday’s poll.
“Resorting to violence is unacceptable,’’the American statement concluded.