Karnwea Wrestles Away Nimba: Floodgates of Supporters Defy Rain, Turn Out En Masse
Nimba County, located in northeastern Liberia, bordering the Ivory Coast and Guinea, is the second most populous county in Liberia, behind Montserrado County. Over the last two election cycles, voters from Nimba were pivotal in electing President Ellen Sirleaf and Unity Party in second round elections. But as the 2017 elections draw near, one man is laser-focused on changing the way Nimba votes: Hon. Harrison Karnwea. And he has his eyes on garnering enough votes for Liberty Party and its Standard Bearer, Cllr. Charles Walker Brumskine.
Hon. Karnwea delivered on his promise to change the voting landscape of Nimba on Friday September 22, 2017 when he brought out thousands of supporters to formally launch the Liberty Party campaign in Nimba. Throngs of supporters braved inclement weather and heavy rain to line the streets of Ganta in anticipation of Cllr. Brumskine and Hon. Karnwea. One celebrant exclaimed “this is exciting. I have never voted Liberty Party before but the message of change that Hon. Karnwea has been sharing in our village has caught my attention. So I am here in support of change.” Another chimed in that “Liberty Party made the right choice with Karnwea. He is well known around here and is respected by everyone. I am not a supporter of Liberty Party, but I respect Karnwea enough to vote for this ticket. He has remained true to his people.”
Hon. Karnwea has lived in rural Liberia, and worked in remote parts of the country for many years. He speaks few dialects, including Gio, Mano and Kpelle. He has a penchant for learning from those he interacts with, especially those in rural areas; it is this connection with rural inhabitants that has many viewing Hon. Harrison Karnwea as the game changer in Nimba. He has been visiting remote villages in Nimba, promoting Liberty Party’s tenets of reconciliation, reform, recovery and rebuilding. In a two-week stretch in July, he and his team visited about 50 remote towns and villages in Nimba. Afterwards, Hon Karnwea said “our people were so happy to see us. In many places, they were not informed about the political situation in our country. In fact, we were the first political party to show up in many towns and villages.” While on the campaign trail, he has reminded his kinsmen from Nimba that this election is too critical to vote for the wrong reason. “I know it is difficult to choose when you have more than one son asking for your support. Nimba has always shown gratitude to its sons. But this election is not about the past; rather, it is about our future. I have lived and worked with my integrity intact. Who has the most chance of
bringing the fruit of victory to Nimba? Who can deliver the opportunity you need to improve your living condition. I have that chance. You have seen the Liberty Party numbers across the country. We have provided hope and we will win this election.”
So as Nimba came out to welcome their son amidst the rain, political pundits were astonished that so many people would show up given Nimba had always followed one candidate. But as thousands of dancing feet lifted water and soil off the ground in total jubilation when Cllr. Brumskine and Hon. Karnwea showed up, it was clear that a new wind was blowing across Nimba. And that wind whispered a different name as the voice of Nimba: Harrison Karnwea