The CDC Deep, Deep Rooted Divide: The Search For Darius Dillon’s Competitor Pt.4

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Rep. Thomas Fallah

In February 2020, a deal was reached between the Committee of the Minister of State for Presidential Affairs and Prof. Wilson Tarpeh to serve as the CDC candidate for the position of Senator of Montserrado County. After much thought and consultation with the family, Minister Tarpeh decided to take on the selfless but uphill task of competing with one of Liberia’s finest and most renowned sons, sitting Montserrado County Senator, Abraham Darius Dillon.

   In agreeing to Minister McGill Committee’s proposal, Minister Tarpeh, in another called meeting, approved the proposal with conditions. Apparently in anticipation of what is transpiring today, Minister Tarpeh said that there should be no primary for Montserrado County and a white ballot should be cast for his senatorial bid and, secondly, that Montserrado should be well-funded. The Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Samuel Tweh, who was also a part of the Committee, said, “Consider it done.” According to the Hot Pepper’s investigation, during the meeting a budget of US$3.5 million (three million five hundred thousand US dollars) was proposed by the committee to win back Montserrado County from the firm grip of the opposition.     Unfortunately, the Chairman of CDC, Mulbah K. Morlu, who was apparently neither consulted nor invited by the Committee to be a part of the decision-making process, has decreed that, regardless of status, anyone who wants to vie for a slot in the December 2020 senatorial race on the CDC ticket should go through the party’s primary. This decree has placed Minister Tarpeh, who about a month ago was making preparation to quit his Commerce Ministerial position to start preparing for the senatorial race, in an awkward position.

There is a popular Liberian adage that says, “Man proposes but God disposes”. The raining on the parade of Minister Tarpeh by Chairman Morlu has left him with no other choice but to quit his ambitious quest for the senatorial slot of Montserrado County and throw in the towel. The Hot Pepper’s investigation into the matter suggests that Prof. Wilson Tarpeh is no longer interested in contesting for the senatorial position of Montserrado County and, therefore, he is not quitting his job as Minister of Commerce to contest as he earlier planned.

    With Minister Tarpeh gracefully pulling out of the senatorial race and with no information within the ranks of the CDC of another partisan to challenge Senator Dillon to the 2020 polls, it could be an educational guess that Representative Thomas Fallah will/could be the lone candidate at the CDC Montserrado County primary.

    On Friday, July 10, 2020, the district #5 Representative, Thomas Fallah, through the T-5 Movement, invited an array of senior media personalities (from both the print and electronic media) to the T-5 Community University, S.K.D Boulevard, for an acquaintance meeting. What seems a bit far-fetched is that Representative Thomas Fallah has been in political power for over 12 years. Currently, he is the Chairman of the Ways, Means and Finance Committee of the House of Representatives, the most senior ranking member of the CDC Montserrado Legislative Caucus and the most senior ranking member of the CDC Legislative Caucus. For Representative Fallah to be having an acquaintance meeting with the press after over 12 years of political power speaks volumes.

    After self-introduction on both ends (the press and the T-5 Movement), the Deputy Press Officer of RIA (name with-held) spoke eloquently about the reason for the gathering and, among many other things, placed emphasis on meeting and exchanging contact to curtail the “all efforts to reach Representative Thomas Fallah proved futile up to Press time”. After an array of small talk from the T-5 Movement and the press demanding to hear from Representative Thomas Fallah himself, who was seated at the high table, the lawmaker finally decided to speak.

    Representative Fallah outlined his impressive credentials after which he announced his intention to contest the CDC primary for the position of senatorial aspirant for Montserrado County on the CDC ticket for the upcoming December 2020 election—finally letting the “cat out of the bag”. However, he cautioned the press about how they transmit the information from the acquaintance meeting to the general public, and placed emphasis on a one-on-one meeting with some ranking members of the press.

   Noticeably and astonishingly, seated on the right hand side of Representative Thomas Fallah was the accused felon in the National Housing Authority bribery scandal, former Deputy Director, Tugbeh C. Tugbeh, who was arrested and jailed along with Director Daunnah Siryon, Ambassador Augustine Weah, Isaac Robert and Patrick Deline.

   The arrest document from the court claimed that, in September 2018 at the Royal Grand Hotel in Monrovia the defendants conspired to solicit and extort money from Emmanuel Tapsoba, former Coordinator of GHLPAZ-IMMO, a Burkina Faso company, which was in the country to construct over 5,000 (five thousand) housing units along the Robertsfield Highway.

    During the negotiations, the records alleged, the accused persons purposely induced and influenced the official of the company to pay US$92,000 (ninety-two thousand United States dollars) under the pretext that the amount served the requirement for doing business in Liberia. But after receiving the money, the defendants, out of deception, criminally converted the money into their personal use and benefit, with the intent to deprive the government of its revenue and deceive potential foreign partners wanting to do business in Liberia.

   This latest development is a slap in the face of the T-5 Movement and a direct negative impact on Representative Thomas Fallah’s candidature. Displaying and parading with people of questionable characters, as well as sitting with them on high tables speaks volumes about the character of Representative Thomas Fallah. As the famous Liberia adage goes, “Birds of the same feathers flock together”.

   At the acquaintance meeting, Tugbe was sitting at the right hand side of Representative Fallah, and constantly whispered to the lawmaker, which indicated his level of closeness and, perhaps, his well-accepted advisory role to the lawmaker. As the CDC supposed candidate begins to display his true character and friends, the public is left to wonder whether the December 2020 election is truly a race between transparency and corruption.

Incumbent Senator Abraham Darius Dillon

The senatorial campaign is extremely important because it will determine a clear road map as to who becomes the next President of the Republic of Liberia. With Senator Darius Dillon running on a platform for greater transparency, accountability and distribution of the Liberian people wealth, his major contender, Representative Thomas Fallah, cannot be wining and dining with alleged criminals. What happened at the acquaintance meeting was a dishonor and demerit to the T-5 Movement and the Representative Thomas Fallah’s campaign, which will be largely judged on transparency and accountability.

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