“In the October’s Elections, I will support whosoever I believe is the best for Liberia. I fear nobody and will not be intimidated by any group of people either. Parties and leaders earn trust and support, they don’t demand and feel entitled to it. We are too advanced in our thinking to subscribe to this. Nobody’s mistakes or bad choices will be my bondage. I will support a team that my conscience tells me is the best for Liberia in the short and medium term. Not a team or train that has lost its control,” Telia Urey wrote on her Facebook page recently.
Telia joins a list of ex-allies of Joseph Nyuma Boakai who have spoken out against him since he named Nimba County’s Senator Jeremiah Koung as his running mate last month. While some members of the opposition – including Grand Bassa County’s Senator Nyonblee Karga-Lawrence and Monsterrado County’s Senator Abraham Darius Dillon – still remain committed to his presidential ambition, there are also several former allies who have become vocal in their dissent of the UP standard bearer’s selection of Koung.
“I am very honored and proud to officially announce that I have been appointed as Chairman of the JNB Tact Team! We have one goal: To ensure Amb. Joseph Boakai is elected president of Liberia in 2023. This is a mission to save Liberia. Over the next 18 months, I will be leading this group of brightest and most dynamic minds in Liberia – carrying out a wide range strategic programs and activities to promote and support our candidate, Joseph Boakai ,” Telia wrote on her Facebook on March 21, 2022 during their friendlier times.
It was a partnership that lasted for several years. Boakai campaigned for Telia back in 2019 when she contested as representative candidate on the ticket of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP), an alliance of four political parties, including Telia father’s All Liberian Party, that was formed in 2020.
“Telia Urey is the best choice for representative of District 15. We are glad that the CPP has many outstanding individuals but having assessed all the options we decided to put forth Telia Urey as our choice. She is not afraid of difficult decisions. Her capacity is not in doubt. Her personal ability is not in doubt. She is firm. She is courageous. She is principled,” Boakai said at the time while campaigning for Telia.
Boakai often spoke highly of Telia, describing her as a “brilliant lady’’ and “someone who has stood for progressive policies.’’ From Telia’s decision to resign from the JNB Tact Team last month to her Thursday’s characterization as toxic, divisive, and outright ridiculous of the phrase ‘if someone doesn’t support UP, they are going against the country’, it seems their relationship has gone soured.
But there’s a long list of allies-turned-rivals that includes the standard bearer of the All Liberian Party, Benoni Urey, who on many occasions accompanied Boakai to several foreign trips reportedly in the interest of the opposition alliance. Here’s the list:
Henry Costa: The prominent talk show host accused the latter of a “betrayal.” Costa announced that he and the (ALP), which he is part of, would no longer support Boakai’s presidential bid.
Costa, known for his strong opposition to the current government as a result of his support of Boakai, made the accusation during a press conference two weeks ago.
The ALP is no longer a part of the Unity Party,” Costa revealed. “It was not the ALP or Costa that betrayed the UP but it is the UP that betrayed us. Boakai and the UP have stopped talking to us for a long time.” He expressed his deep disappointment and frustration, alleging that Boakai had betrayed their friendship and the principles they had once shared.
However, Boakai denied the accusations in a quick response to Costa, saying: “Henry P. Costa is my son, and I hold nothing against him. I forgive him, and I am always willing to work with every well meaning Liberian to accomplish our mission to rescue Liberia. I would advise all to focus our attention on the mission to remove the nightmare we have presiding over our country. Let’s Think Liberia, Love Liberia, and Build Liberia.”
Benoni Urey: Urey last week expressed strong disapproval of the opposition Unity Party (UP) and its standard bearer, former Vice President Amb. Joseph N. Boakai. Urey accuses Boakai of engaging in tribal politics to recruit members from the ALP to join UP, leading to the disintegration of their collaboration.
“We believe that all Liberians were united in their love for the country. In the best interest of Liberia, we made certain decisions, thinking they were for the greater good. But if you fight for your country and it turns its back on you, what options do you have?” Urey lamented.
According to Urey, the ALP has withdrawn its support for the Unity Party due to the treatment received by ALP members within the UP. He asserted that the ALP will make it known to the UP that they cannot be ignored, as they possess considerable electoral influence.
“Several of our candidates were coerced to leave us simply because they hailed from the same tribe and county. Tribal pressures were used to disrupt our unity. These were individuals we had worked with for six years, and it was disheartening to see them turning against us,” Urey explained.
Urey clarified that it was not the ALP that abandoned the Unity Party, but rather, the Unity Party that abandoned the ALP and even managed to attract some of its members.
“If we had participated in the 2023 Presidential and Legislative elections alongside the Unity Party, they would have treated ALP members as if they were insignificant. They snatched away one or two legislative seats that we had nurtured and strengthened over the years. They exploited tribal divisions and forced our members to join their party. But I want everyone to know that we are not foolish and won’t be manipulated in such a manner,” Urey asserted firmly.
Musa Hassan Bility: The Chairman of the CPP predicted that Boakai won’t reach the second round of the forthcoming Presidential and Legislative Elections.
Speaking this week in a live podcast on the recent ordeal expressed by Urey, Bility stated that there was ongoing maneuvering by surrogates of the UP to convince the opposition block into supporting the UP against incumbent President George Manneh Weah.
Bility, whose Liberty Party remained in the CPP alliance following a fallout with UP, said: “I will make sure, in my power, Joseph Boakai doesn’t become president of Liberia, because he doesn’t mean well for Liberia. He undermined the spirit of a united opposition.”
Reacting to Telia’s post, Bility wrote: “We have had our differences, mostly in your defense of the very folks that don’t want to tolerate your views today. But I admire your courage in the face of narcism that has consumed a certain bunch in our body politics. Whatever decision you make in the coming days or weeks, I want you to know that I will continue to respect your views as always. Those who believe that the one and only way to keep our country on the right path is through an ‘unmanned train’ should continue to do so.”

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