By Mark B. Dumbar
The Presidential Run-off Election between incumbent George M. Weah and his main challenger, Joseph N. Boakai is becoming more interesting as brothers and sisters and other relatives have begun going against each other on the political future of the northern vote-rich county of Nimba.
Since the pronouncement of final results of the October 10, 2023 Presidential and Legislative Elections by the National Election Commission (NEC) in which none of the 20 presidential candidates obtained the required 50 percent plus one vote to be declare President winner, political parties, defeated candidates, individuals and groups have begun throwing their weights behind either of the two qualified candidates in the Presidential Run-off Election scheduled for November 14, 2023.
Following the announcement of the final results, Liberia People’s Party (LPP) Standard-bearer, Tiawan Saye Gongloe who hailed from Nimba County has endorsed the Unity Party’s Standard-bearer Joseph N. Boakai in the presidential run-off election.
Just a day after Cllr. Gongloe and his LPP endorsed the UP candidate, his biological sister, Edith Gongloe-Weh took the other lane by swiftly endorsing the reelection bid of President George M. Weah saying that Weah is the best option for Liberia. She added that her decision to endorse Mr. Weah is based on the level of development across the country under the leadership of President Weah.
Both brother and sister of the Gongloe family have gone their separate ways in the political decision of Nimba County with just two weeks to the pending presidential run-off election in November.
In revealing her support to the ruling party standard-bearer on Thursday, October 26, 2023, Madam Weh said that her decision followed widespread consultations among the Gongloe family.
But her brother who came fourth in the just-ended October 10, Presidential and Legislative Elections earlier pledged his support to the “Recuse Team” for the presidential run-off election.
Edith Gongloe-Weh who previously served as Superintendent of Nimba County has contested two Senatorial elections in the county and could pull more votes for Mr. Weah considering her previous position in the county.
Political analysts say she has more edge over her brother based on the number of votes she pulled in the two elections she contested unlike her brother, Cllr. Gongloe whose influence is only in the legal circle. Her elder brother, Cllr. Tiawan Gongloe is a well-known and well-respected Human Rights lawyers whose influence goes across Nimba County.
As the two Gongloes go their separate ways in the presidential runoff, the baffling question is; who controls Nimba County in terms of votes pulling? Political pundits are watching as to who is more influential to deliver their county to either incumbent Weah or former Vice President Boakai.
The battle of who owns Nimba County is pending as Nimbaians are said to be divided over the political decision of the Gongloes. Who really owns Nimba County? This question will be answered on November 14, 2023 at the ballot box in Nimba County.