By Suge Roberts, Brooklyn Park, MN
Members of the Minnesota United Sarpo Association (MUSA) on February 8 elected Andrew B. Suah as president. He defeated Pastor Gbotoe Saydee with 55 to 32 votes.
The elected president said he ran for the MUSA presidency to built viable unified Sarpo community in Minnesota. Mr. Suah assured his fellow Liberians that his administration will discourage the petty politics that divide the Sarpo people.
Announcing the election results, the election commissioner, Jeremiah S. K. Pojah said, the total ballets counted were two hundred, but two ballets were disqualified while ninety- eight ballets were shared between Mr. Suah and Pastor Saydee.
Pastor Saydee was an eleventh hour step-in candidate for Jacob Kulah whose picture was on the ballet box but was absent from the election due to some personal unexplained reasons.
After the election results were announced, Pastor Saydee shook hands with the elected president, signaling a seeming sign of unity. He congratulated his colleague and advised him to keep the Sarpo people united, and be strong in doing so. He pledged his full support to the elected the president.
The former president of the MUSA, Christopher N. Wylie, said, he stepped down
from office unending his two -year term because he believes in the concept of power sharing, and he would love to be considered former president rather than a dictator.
Therefore, he urged his critics to see him as peaceful as he also sees them, but some critics described the former president as a man who loves pleasure, and a man who is not yet ready for leadership responsibility.
A key observer during the election, John Bartee, who is also a prominent member of the Liberian community in Minnesota told the New Liberian that, “democracy is exchanging of ideas,” therefore he believes the Sarpo people are exchanging ideas for peace and unity. In his opinion, the election process was transparent.
Mr. Suah’s Campaign manager, David Wylie, assured the Minnesota Sarpo community that Mr. Suah and his vice president Dorcas Tarley will keep the faith and hopes of the Sarpo people alive by listening to them and doing what is needed for the Sarpo people.
On the other hand, Pastor Saydee’s campaign manager, Samuel K. Williams said the election results were “cool,” and that he is willing to work wholeheartedly with the newly elected administration.
One of the members of the Sarpo Community in Minnesota, Alice Quiah was proud to be part of the election process because it is all about unity and unity is all Liberians need now. The elected officials of Mr. Suah’s administration are Dorcas Tarley vice president, Greene Geleo secretary, Kassey Wylie financial secretary, Serela Nyonteh Treasurer, and Robert Tugbe chaplain.
For every leadership there should be financial accountability and the past MUSA administration headed by former president Christopher Wylie, former treasurer Helena Tugba, and former financial secretary Hamilton Kulee said they are yet to make an official financial report to the new administration in days to come.
Sarpo and Kru are the two tribes in Sinoe County in south eastern Liberia. The MUSA was established by G. Augustus Wrayee, Mr. Daniel Saydee, and James Saydee in Minnesota May18, 1991.
James Saydee (no blood relations to Pastor Saydee) was the first president of the MUSA who brought the Minnesota Sarpo people together to unite themselves. Mr. Saydee said he and his friends decided to consolidate the Minnesota Sarpo community to set an example of peace, unity .and to send out a message of peace to all Liberians world wide.