Zwedru, Grand Gedeh County – With less than five months to Liberia’s presidential and representative elections, the political twists and turns are generating controversies for several political parties including the ruling Unity Party.
In Grand Gedeh County, UP has suspended its chapter chairman for, amongst others allegations, misappropriation of almost US$14,000 intended for the smooth operations of the party in the Southeastern County.
Interestingly, Daniel Flahn was suspended after serving just one month as chairman of the ruling party chapter in the county, and now observers are insinuating his absence would affect the party’s preparations ahead of the crucial October polls.
Despite claiming his innocence, the party’s National Executive Convention Committee says Flahn’s alleged act has “the propensity of undermining the Party’s dreams and visions therefore action shall be taken against any individual or individuals who is attached to such unethical behavior to avoid future embarrassments for the Party”.
According to a communication in possession of LocalVoicesLiberia, a network of journalists, dated and signed by the party’s national Secretary General, Eugene L. Nagbe, Flahn’s suspension came as a result of “ethical breach and financial malpractices”.
The letter also states “gross ethical transgressions, indiscipline and disorderly conduct” as reasons for his removal.
“This ugly behavior had compelled the Party to take some punitive action against the county chairman Daniel Flahn,” the letter reads.
The communication furthered stressed that the suspension of the Unity Party local chapter of Grand Gedeh County Chairman took effect as of May 26, 2017, and at the same time called on the suspended chairman to turn over all assets assigned him in order to avoid further discomfiture with the party.
He was also warned to refrain “himself from making any representation for and on behalf of the party during the period of his suspension”.
But the suspended chapter chairman denies any wrong doing and claims the decision to suspend him was due to a ploy by other local executives.
Mr. Flahn told LocalVoicesLiberia that his suspension came as result of “undermining moves” by several of his co- workers in the county.
“All these allegations levied against me are not my doings,” he said. “I am a straight forward man who believes in transparency and accountability where I go to work.”
He argues that “when people are not in your interest as a leader it is difficult to work to their expectations”.
LocalVoicesLiberia can confirmed that before the decision was reached to suspend Flahn, complaints were filed by some local party officials of the UP to its headquarters in Monrovia, accusing the deposed chairman of mismanaging funds intended for operations and payment for voter registration observers.
According to sources, the situation hampered the smooth operations of the party in the county, while concerns continue to heighten over the activities of the party following the suspension.
However, one partisan asserts that “the suspension of the county chairman does not have any effect on the day to day running of the party”.
Peter Gaye, the Secretary General of press and propaganda affair of the local chapter, says the decision was appropriate although there is always a slight opening when the head of an institution is been removed from his position and makes it is difficult to run the organization for few times.
“It’s difficult to suspend somebody especially the head of that organisation but we need transparency and accountability as leaders mainly in this political period of our Country,” Gaye said.
Currently, the Unity Party Local Chapter in Grand Gedeh County is being headed by the co-chairman, Att. Philip Green, as its acting county chairman
Report by: Moses Geply
Editor’s Note: This story is also published by FrontPage Africa newspaper.