The Inquirer is a leading independent daily newspaper published in Liberia, based in Monrovia. It is privately owned with a "good reputation".

Nation Mourns Charles Brumskine …President Weah Describes It As “Paralyzing”

The nation is mourning the death of one of its statesmen and politician, Counselor Charles Walker Brumskine the first standard-bearer of the opposition Liberty Party (LP). He died on Wednesday, November 20, in the United States, where he has been seeking medical treatment. He was in his 68 years. Brumskine became politically prominent in the 1990s as an ally of former President Charles Taylor. When Taylor became President in 1997, Brumskine was elected Senator of Grand Bassa County, and later became President Pro-tempore of the Liberian Senate.
By 1999, however, they began feuding, and Brumskine fled the country after being threatened by Taylor’s supporters. He returned to Liberia in 2003 with plans to run in the scheduled 2003 presidential election.
However, Taylor’s resignation that year and the installment of a two-year transitional government led to the elections being cancelled. In 2004, Brumskine began campaigning for the 2005 presidential elections as a member of the Liberty Party.
Like most of the other candidates, he promised to bring reconciliation to the country following its political turmoil, and improve the economy and infrastructure.
What made him unique was the strong religious message in his campaign. Ultimately, he received nearly 14% of the vote, 6% less than the second-place candidate, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, and therefore he was not able to participate in the runoff.
Due to his popularity in the first round, he could have significantly influenced the run-off had he endorsed either candidate. He decided not to endorse Sirleaf or her opponent, George Weah, in the runoff.
In 2010, he announced his plans to challenge Sirleaf in the 2011 presidential election.
On 20 January 2011, Brumskine announced that Bong County Senator Franklin Obed Siakor would be his running mate in the 2011 presidential election.
Soon after the announcement, some Liberian political analysts believed that the merger of Bassa County’s Charles Brumskine and Bong County’s Franklin Siakor would pose trouble for Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf’s re-election bid.
It was also argued that Brumskine’s pairing with Siakor delivered a fatal blow to other opposition political parties that might enter the race for President, as the race was thought likely to come down to Brumskine and Johnson-Sirleaf.
However, Winston Tubman was the most popular of Johnson-Sirleaf’s opponents, and the third-place finisher in the contest was Prince Johnson…
Brumskine was educated at the University of Liberia where he earned a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1973. He then attended Louis Arthur Grimes School of Law where he was awarded a Bachelor of Laws degree in 1981 and passed the Liberian National Bar Association (LNBA).
He earned a Master of Laws degree from the Dedman School of Law at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas the following year.
Meanwhile, President Weah has described the death of Cllr. Brumskine as paralyzing.
In a especial statement issued yesterday, President Weah said:
“ On the evening of Wednesday, November 20, 2019, news about the sudden death of Liberian statesman and legal luminary—Cllr. Charles Walker Brumskine—was announced. The news of the passing of such a national asset is indeed paralyzing.
“My wife, First Lady Marie Clar Weah, and I, on behalf of the Government and people of Liberia, wish to extend our heartfelt condolences to the Brumskine family, particularly Estelle, his wife, and three children, Charlene, Charles Jr. and Walker.
“Indeed, our Nation is broken. The cruel hands of death have taken away a fine Liberian patriot, a man of peace, who preached “Liberianism” for far too long.
“I had the privilege to interact with the late Cllr. Brumskine on many occasions. Despite the lake of politics which consistently divided us, we both respected and admired each other. He, particularly as a big brother sharing Bassa affinity, wanted the best out of me; his many counsels and overtures I shall never forget.
“There is no gainsaying about the fact that Liberia has lost a great fighter, who would never settle down unless the right and legal thing was done. He put Liberia first. He made peace and ordered his political badge.
“Indeed, history will remember Cllr. Brumskine as a principled politician whose tenacity and wisdom as a lawyer and humanitarian saved this nation from many odd events.
Liberia will miss this great hero and progressive of our time.
“My sympathies also go out to the leadership and membership of the Liberty Party which he faithfully served and fought for.
“I order that the National Ensign be flown at half-mast tomorrow from 8:am to 6pm.
“May the Lord of Host give him a peaceful rest until the Resurrection Morning.”

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