Kakata, Margibi County – Scores of young people mainly high school students of Margibi County’s electoral district three have pledged “unflinching” support to a youthful representative candidate in Foday Faisu.
Faisu, 25, is contesting on the ticket of Liberia’s oldest political party, True Whig Party – an establishment that ruled the country for more than a century until 1980 when it was toppled by a military coup.
The National Elections Commission (NEC) candidate roster shows Mr. Faisu as the youngest candidate in the 2017 presidential and representative elections.
And his youthfulness is amassing admiration from youths who have labeled him a “direct representation of their youthful interest”.
While his candidacy is drawing awe from his youthful followings, contesting on the ticket of Liberia’s oldest political party paints a contrasting image of the alumnus of the famous Booker Washington Institute (BWI) located in Kakata, Margibi County.
But he insists his representation will be a “new day” for the people of Margibi electoral district number three.
In an exclusive interview with LocalVoicesLiberia, the 2015/2016 BWI graduate said his quest for the legislature is to set the pace for other young people to follow.
“This dream is an offspring of the young people, they have decided to vote someone like them, that’s why I was chosen,” Faisu said.
In a race where money, wealth, and popularity influence electorate, the TWP representative candidate is sweating over sourcing finance for his campaign.
Some observers say he’s far behind his opponents in spending-the-cash to lure voters, however; he optimistic and says he “Muscle the bravery to join the political competition” based on the “high level of motivation” his peers continue to give him.
“We are richer than some of the candidates because friends are contributing to this process from their pockets,” he said. “We don’t have mobility (vehicle) but my supporters have committed to move from towns to towns and from village to village.”
In his platform epitomizing the priorities of Liberians, Faisu highlights issues that are tantalizingly familiar with the youth population.
Youth participation, education, health care and rehab for under privileged youth are key on his legislative manifesto.His popularity spurs from his intellect shown in his academic quizzing clouts with the BWI team.
In 2016, Faisu shone while captaining the team in a competition organized by the Liberia Media for Democratic Initiative (LMDI) when he was awarded the most valuable player (MVP).
He’s also the founder of the Margibi Veteran Quizzers Association, a group that has nurtured many young aspiring high school academicians.
His supporters, some who are first-time voters, see him as a motivation for other young people that want to find a way into politics and offer national leadership.
“He’s the direct face of the young people and at the same time a role model, that is why we are putting our one and two cents together to support him,” said Anthony Garteh, 22, a first-time voter.
Another first-time voter, 20-year-old Emmanuel Kabba, said his support for the youthful candidate is due to his continual motivation and influence on academic mentorship for many young people in the district.
“He taught me mathematics and my admiration about him is that he’s a guy who loves education and the young people,” Kabba said.
However, Faisu’s critics say he lacks the experience to provide political leadership at Liberia’s law-making house.
Report By: Emmanuel Degleh