Monrovia, Liberia- The National Patriotic Party of Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor was a scene of physical battle on Sunday, as partisans loyal to dissenting factions engaged in stone throwing and fistfight.
In a a video posted on Social Media by our sister entity, Gbana TV, partisans can be seen throwing rocks and hitting each other with dangerous objects.
According to reports, the conflict originated from a leadership dispute between the Standard Bearer of the Party, Vice President Jewel Howard-Taylor, and the Party’s Chair, Jonathan Bannie.
Party officials loyal to the Bannie faction alleged that they were prevented from entering the premises of the party’s headquarters by supporters of Madam Jewel Howard-Taylor after a covert Executive Committee meeting was called without the consent of the party’s chairman. The aggrieved partisans who referred to themselves as stakeholders said, the meeting was called by Vice President Taylor for the purpose of expelling Chairman Bannie. They accused the Vice President of unanimously reinstating partisans and officials of the party who turned against the party during the 2017 elections as well as recommending non-partisans to positions in government.
The aggrieved stakeholders who include Eric Kennedy, former Assistant Secretary General; Alexander Shannon, former Assistant Secretary General for Operations and Mobilization; and former Deputy Campaign Manager for Grand Kru County Sakajipo Sakajipo said, they won’t sit and allow the Vice President to singlehandedly run the party and will do everything to resist any attempt of such on her part.
Several persons were reported to have been injured during the fight, and are being treated at hospitals around Monrovia. Our correspondents in Monrovia say, some partisans mainly from the Bannie faction have been jailed pending court proceedings.
In the meantime, the Vice President’s Office confirmed the expulsion of Chairman James Bannie stating, “He took decisions against the interest of the party”. The VP Office however clarified that the meeting was not called by the Vice President, rather, it was called by the National Patriotic Party Executive Committee.