By Moses Uneh Yahmia
That the EFFL was not in the forefront of the protest movement in order to increase its value on the political stock exchange and thus thrust itself into rotten and inadmissible compromises with the thoroughly discredited government, the pressure group saw it exigent to unleash such fairy tale against the COP in order to discredit the latter before the eyes the mass of people and position themselves as the credible alternative, something which is a pipe dream, as it would take a lot to detour the Liberian people from the conscious belief that COP and the four collaborating parties are the popular alternatives to the Weah government.
That the EFFL was not given a dime like they were with respect to the missing billions protest and the campaign for war crime court, they have to vomit such homespun logic in concert with their sponsors and this has only brought to the fore the rotten opportunism of the EFFL, its ideological degeneracy, and the revolting short-sightedness of its bohemian leaders. This is the group which formed part of a coalition that organized the protest against the missing 16billion. Some of us subjected ourselves to the leadership of this coalition which had Emmanuel Gonquoi as one of its leaders. Gonquoi received funds from the diaspora to help with preparation for the protest. He and his apologists expended those funds as they wished. We were in Ghana and promoted the protest via the social media without requesting a dime and without expecting a cent from the leadership. Insofar that protest was meant to expose the corruption of the regime and create a shift in the consciousness of the people, we threw in our all to make it so.
We knew these elements would have reached this level of childish playacting. The so-called organizers of the EFFL have no elementary ideological precept about tactics and strategy. We know for a fact that it consists of many young members of the former ruling Unity Party who were soaked with grief after the fraudulent elections of 2017. With no basic ideological training and political experience, Gonqoui keeps leading the young comrades into a blind alley with the belief that EFFL is now the “Only hope for the masses” and that it is okay to baselessly antagonize deeply rooted individuals and institutions in the opposition. To think that an infantile pressure group, with no ideological clarity, consistent political work and serious link with the people can exert itself over those who have done so through long years of struggle has only robbed the EFFL of every claim to be a revolutionary formation and has confirmed our long-held hypothesis that its actions are petit bourgeois radicalism and not revolutionary, as it follows no revolutionary discipline and theory. This backward tendency of these little ones who are nowhere near being the alternative to the Weah’s nightmare is a complete distraction in the service of the regime.
We admonish the COP not to give these imps any modicum of credence because the broad masses of the Liberian people who yearn for genuine liberation have seen through them for who they are: pretenders, traitors and schemers. Their actions have even put them on the defensive and we are reaching at a decisive moment when they will be routed by the ordinary masses of the people. I see them on social media reckoning with the wrath of the people as the latter have refused to give receptive ears to this campaign of slander against the COP. The little credibility they achieved over the year is being rapidly derailed.
But conscious political opportunism is not an exception to the history of elements like Emmanuel Gonquoi and Rufus Neuvfille who have not the discipline for self-sacrifice and perseverance in any revolutionary struggle. The duo were members of the CDC. They both left the party and joined the erstwhile ruling Unity Party in search of political gravy. Rufus was given a job and Gonquoi was an ardent visitor to the offices of government officials. That they have elected to opportunistically undermine the united front against the camp of reaction, no one should be taken aback because these political dwarfs are addicted to opportunism. We must leave them to set the stage for their own self-destruction. This is why we were never impressed by riffraff wearing red t-shirts and red berets in the name of Economic Freedom Fighters. Revolutionariness is not defined by dress code, chanting confusing battle cries, nor being loud mouth with no depth. It is defined by political and ideological clarity and the commitment of militants and cadres to endure suffering without succumbing to impermissible compromises.
For our tendency, our aim is to build a revolutionary vanguard that will lead the people to sweep away the imperialist capitalist Liberian state and establish a new state where the exploited layers like the working class, peasantry and urban poor of the society will deploy labor to change nature and create wealth not to be repatriated by foreign private capital but rather appropriated through centralized planning by the producers of such wealth for the benefit of the Liberian masses. It is this economic base that will draw out the ethical rules of all its superstructures be it political, cultural, and religious, etc.
We are not impatient revolutionaries. Looking at the objective condition in the country, it would be utterly naïve and politically stupid to think that this tendency in its embryonic stage and with no serious work and engagement with the people will achieve a social revolution in 2023 and that it can earn for itself the vanguard role by waging a malicious propaganda war against those the people are massively joining and looking up to for political direction.
Liberia is a country where left-wing politics has been promoted by the ruling class and its imperialist sponsors as toxic. Also the impoverished layers are not class conscious. Therefore, it will require serious sacrifices and time to educate and enlighten them. To start with, we must have cadres with the necessary class consciousness and revolutionary insights to participate in the popular masses’ daily activities and at the same time explain the correctness of our revolutionary program. This in addition to their daily experiences with the imperialist capitalist system will develop their consciousness.
Such work of the vanguard tendency can be done through legal and illegal struggles such as propaganda, agitation, study groups, and other political activities. Serious engagement with the people is mainly possible through illegal struggles like worker strikes, service delivery protest in slum communities, etc. And it is in this direction we are directing our efforts but would have to deal with the most dangerous contradictions that would prevent us from struggling towards this end. To think that such herculean task can be carried out by running campaigns of slander against oppositions to the Weah’s tyranny and defiantly refusing to tactically and strategically align with non-ideological allies is to make a fatal political mistake.
The popular opposition, the leadership of COP included, is aware of the ideological divergence between our tendency and theirs. We have debated and will continue to debate about these differences. The popular opposition is only opposed to Weah and his henchmen and not the exploitative economic system which has kept our country backward and produced nightmares such as George Weah as leader of the country. To them, there is nothing wrong with the diktats of Neoliberalism underpinned by the IMF, World Bank and WTO. These prescriptions will only work best for the Liberian people if Weah and his handlers are not heads of the apparatuses of the state. This is where our disagreement lies.
But for now, due to the objective conditions, our aim at this stage of the struggle is to help the popular opposition defeat the tyranny. Even if they take the power, it is ok. This is even the surest way to make the people, through political experience know that the popular opposition, like the ruling party cannot resolve the social contradictions of the neo-colonial capitalist state. At that time, we would have strengthened our revolutionary vanguard with the masses and their disillusionment in the next regime would shift their support to us. As Lenin taught us, to act otherwise as the EFFL and others is to “place difficulties in the way of the revolution; for revolution is impossible without a change in the views of the majority of the people and this change is brought about by the political experience of the masses, and never propaganda alone.”