Liberia, in less than two weeks, will decide among 20 candidates who are contesting for the country’s highest seat.
This presidential race saw a drop in the number of candidates as compared to 2017, which had 21 candidates
President George Mannah Weah of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC), who is seeking reelection for a second six-year term, will be challenged by the contenders to persuade the 2,471,617 million voters of their merit to do so.
|Tiawan Saye Gongloe||The Liberian People’s Party|
|Dr. Clarence Moniba||Liberia National Union (LINU)|
|Joshua Tom Turner||The New Liberia Party (NLP)|
|Luther N. Yorfee||The Liberia Rebuilding Party|
|Jeremiah Whapoe||the Vision for Liberia Transformation Party|
|Simeon Freeman||the Movement for Progressive Change (MPC)|
|Edward W. Appleton||the Grassroots Development Movement|
|William Wiah Tuider||Democratic National Allegiance (DNA)|
|Joseph Boakai||Unity Party (UP)|
|Sheikh Kouyateh||Liberia First Movement (LFM)|
Age: 67 years
Gongloe is a human rights lawyer. He is speaking about tackling corruption in Liberia, and his party is promising an issue-based campaign. Gongloe says the election is about the people: “They will drive the process; they are the ones already driving it, and we are only giving them direction.”
Party History: LPP was first named Movement for Justice in Africa (MOJA)
Tokpah Nah-Tipoteh in the early 1970s and some ideological colleagues founded the party. Subsequently, Dr. Sawyer, Dew Mayson, Dr. Nyan K. Taryor, Boima Fahnbulleh Jr., and Dr. Joseph Guannu joined.
In 1984, it was transformed into a political party called the Liberia People’s Party but was denied registration after the Special Election Commission (SECOM) said the party subscribed to a socialist ideology that was strange to Liberian society.
They were banned from contesting the 1985 election.
Their first election was in 1997, when Tipoteh and Guannau contested as president and vice president, respectively. In 1997, the party disintegrated because most of the young cadres and individuals supported Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf.
Some chairpersons of the party include Amos Sawyer and Dusty Wolokolie, John Karweaye, and Lofa County’s current senator, Joseph Jallah, who contested several times on the party’s ticket before joining the CDC in 2023.
Family: Gongloe lost his first wife and is now married to Sonie Kolako-Gongloe. The two are said to be blessed with three children. However, we cannot confirm if these children are biological.
Moniba is the youngest presidential candidate. He previously worked for the Sirleaf government. He is seeking support from youth in Liberia. He says the elections in October “are the most critical in our lifetime.” Our nation’s destiny is uncertain. We cannot afford to go back to the remnant of our failed past or to continue the enormous failure of the last six years in a nation where over 85% of the population is under the age of 45.
Age: 44 Years
Party History: Clarence is currently contesting the party founded by his father, the Liberia National Union (LINU).
In 1991, his father nominated and reaffirmed Amos Sawyer at the All-Liberian Conference as the interim president. Sawyer was previously chosen in the Gambia, but since it was a foreign land, it was requested that the confirmation be done in Liberia.
LINU was established after the National Democratic Party of Liberia (NDPL) of Samuel Doe denied Clarence’s father the ticket because he decided to nominate Sawyer as interim president.
Family: Moniba remains unmarried and has disclosed that he has not been involved in any romantic relationships for many years. Although he confirmed having a son named Miles K. Moniba, he is the youngest son of Dr. Moniba, former Vice President of Liberia (1984–1990), and Minita K. Moniba.
His father earlier served as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Court of St. James in England, the Holy See (Vatican), and the Sovereign Military Order Malta in Rome, Italy, with residence in London from 1981–84.
Before he was appointed Ambassador, he served as Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for European Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Monrovia. From 1976–1980, he was the First Secretary and Consul at the Embassy of Liberia in Washington, D.C., and Ottawa, as well as Canada, with residence in Washington, D.C.
It is unknown if Clarence was born in Liberia since his father relocated to the US as an ambassador.
In a live radio interview (1:09:12), he says Liberia has a leadership deficit and he wants to industrialize Liberia. He is a reverend and oversees Champion Ministry International in Monrovia.
Age: 47 years
Party: The New Liberia Party was certified in 2017 and it’s the party’s second participation in an election
Family: Turner said he is from Sinoe, while his mother is from Grand Bassa. In this broadcast (19:10), he is introduced as the president of Turner World Outreach and the head of the Rebuild Liberia movement. A social and non-violent social movement.
He is married to Joy Edana Turner and has four children. He says he oversees 143 churches around the world.
On his Facebook page, Turner has a website that is not functioning.
Turner is accused of money laundering and fraud, an allegation he denies: “I have never gotten involved in anything of the sort before in my life and have never gotten involved in anything that is not clean in all of my career and life path in the quest to get financial gains. My hands are clean and will remain clean.”
Is a lawyer and a reverend of the Seventh-Day Adventist church. He says his government will tackle illicit drugs. “What are we doing as a country to tackle drugs? “When last have we tested officers of the Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency?”
Yorfee says he is not against the war crimes court, but the court will create more harm than good. He says the procrastination in establishing the court is overdue, and therefore there is no need to establish the court. He says finding evidence to prosecute perpetrators is difficult.
The LRP candidate contested the secretary position at the Liberia National Bar Association but was defeated.
Family: He said he is married and has four children.
Is an agriculturalist and an author. He thinks that Liberia’s insufficient food security is another factor that is impeding the country’s progress, but he stated that all of the country’s problems could be solved through agriculture.
He attributed the insufficient food security in Liberia to the death of former President William R. Tolbert, indicating that the death of the former president was a result of a food crisis that left a serious curse on the country.
Party History: The National Elections Commission (NEC) certified the party.
Whapoe contested the 2017 elections and accumulated 3,946 votes, amounting to 0.3%.
Family: He is a nephew of the late Jackson F. Doe, Sr., and is married to Mrs. Kou Leesah Whapoe. He has five children and hails from Nimba County.
Is a businessperson and politician. He believes that slicing public bureaucratic structures to enable the redeployment of desperately needed resources into the private sector to generate economic growth is the ultimate solution to lifting Liberians out of poverty, hopelessness, and deprivation.
Party History: In 2011, on Sept. 21, the party filed a complaint against the NEC’s decision to register six of the candidates for president. MPC alleged that the candidates—including Winston Tubman (CDC), Charles Brumskine (LP), Prince Johnson (NUDP), Kennedy Sandy (Liberia Transformation Party, LTP), Dew Mayson (National Democratic Coalition, NDC), and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (UP)—had for significant periods lived abroad and therefore did not meet the constitutional 10-year residency requirement.
The court ruled that Article 52(c) of the constitution could apply only to a constitutional period and was in effect suspended by the civil crisis.
Because Article 52(c) was suspended in 2004 and reinstated in 2006, the 10-year residency requirement would not apply until 2016, by which time a 10-year constitutional period would have passed. It is worth noting that the court did not take this opportunity to provide an unambiguous definition of residency. The party contested the 2011 election when Freeman first contested the presidency.
Freeman accumulated 6,682 4% in his second attempt at the presidency in 2017.
The party was among those who failed to declare their assets within the timeline stipulated by the constitution.
Family: He is married to Vivian Freeman, and the union has three children. Freeman is said to be linked to former and convicted Charles Taylor. Sources say a huge value of wealth owned by Freeman is given by Taylor.
In 2017, he was accused of refusing to pay a sex worker, an allegation he denied.
He has vowed to invest in three sectors to improve the country’s economy and provide jobs for many Liberians.
Appleton said his government will ensure speedy growth of the country’s economy through investing in the fishing, Tourism and Agriculture sectors to increase revenue generation
He says these sectors will see Liberia’s economy grow and be on par with her neighboring nations.
Party: The grass-roots Democratic Party was founded in 2011 with its first presidential candidate, Gladys Beyan. Appleton is the second candidate vying for the party’s ticket for Liberia’s presidency. The party did not put out a presidential candidacy in 2017, but 27 legislative candidates did.
Family: Appleton, hailing from Maryland, is the son of a renowned deceased lawyer and founder of the National Democratic Party.
Ex-president Doe contracted his father for military cases, and one that he is known for is the prosecution of Gray D. Allison.
Because of Doe’s party, the National Democratic Party of Liberia (NDPL), Appleton’s father in the 80s changed his party to the Conventional Democratic Party (CDP).
However, the CDP did not meet the election threshold set by Emmet Harmon, then commissioner of SECOM. Therefore, his father did not contest the 1985 election.
A businessperson, humanitarian, and former presidential candidate in the 2017 Liberian presidential and legislative elections
According to Tuider, his overriding desire to be president is motivated by his aspiration to improve the lives of Liberians and to transform Liberia into a modern, prosperous nation, “beginning with a top-notch universal free educational system and a justice system that will tackle corruption, the root cause of our nation’s problem.”
Tuider promised to address corruption and the misappropriation of public funds. He firmly stated, “Under my leadership, there will be zero tolerance for embezzlement and abuse of power.”
Party History: In 2017, Tuider contested the New Liberia Party that Turner is now contesting. In this election, Tuider is the presidential candidate of the Democratic National Allegiance (DNA) that was certified this year.
Family: Tuider is the son of Reverend John T. Tuider and Mrs. Lucy B. Tuider of Betu, Grand Kru County. His father was a Methodist preacher, and his mother was a marketwoman.
He has been married to Jeanette Renee Tuider for 30 years, and they are blessed with six children, namely: Denise, Joy, Cora, Isata, William Jr., and Jeremy.
He served as the 29th vice president of the Republic of Liberia (2006–2017) in the administration of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa’s first female head of state.
Boakai declared his commitment to tackling corruption as one of the primary objectives of his administration, should he be elected president of Liberia. Boakai emphasized the urgent need to confront this “cancer” that is eating up the country and pledged to address it with the utmost brutality.
Party History: The Unity Party (UP) is a political party in Liberia that was started in 1984 by Edward B. Kesselly, also its first standard bearer. Officially founded at Buchanan in Grand Bassa County, the party was established on July 27, 1985.
The Unity Party participated in the first elections after the 1980 coup, running against President Samuel Doe in October 1985.
The party has remained active in Liberian politics since and was, until 2017, the ruling party. In the elections held on July 19, 1997, UP presidential candidate Ellen Johnson Sirleaf won the 2005 and 2011 elections.
This is Boakai’s second attempt on the party’s ticket. He contested on the party’s ticket in 2017 and lost to now-incumbent George Manneh Weah.
In January 2018, the party expelled President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf from the party for campaigning for and with Weah against her own Vice President, Joseph Boakai, who was campaigning on the party ticket.
Family: In a radio interview (24:58), Boakai confirmed that he is not carrying his biological father’s name because he was raised by his uncle in Bomi County. Boakai has been married to Katumu Yatta, his spouse, for 50 years, and together they have four children.
Kouyateh is a businessman-turned-politician and has been seen as a civil rights advocate since the ascendancy of President George Weah to the highest seat of the land.
He is among the individuals who organized the recent #Fix-The-Country protest that caught the attention of many Liberians both in and out of the country.
He has also called for the establishment of a War and Economic Crimes Court in the country as a means of ending corruption in Liberia.
Party History: Kouyateh was a member of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) but resigned in 2020.
The same year, he contested the Montserrado senatorial elections as an independent candidate.
Kouyateh has contested twice for the senatorial seat of Montserrado County and lost both in 2014 and 2020.
In 2014, Kouyateh contested the Liberia Transformation Party of Kennedy Sandy, a one-time presidential candidate in 2011.