President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has begun looking beyond her presidential tenure telling citizens of the southeast regional county of River Gee that she has other plans.
Though Mrs. Sirleaf who was on the final leg of her south eastern farewell tour did not say what exactly she would do after her tenure, she told local citizens that she would go and do other things.
Mrs. Sirleaf will be the first Liberian president to hand over power to a successor after her tenure in January 2018.
While bidding farewell to citizens in four southeastern counties last week including Sinoe, Grand Kru, Maryland and River Gee, President Sirleaf encountered repeated questions by her loyalists and supporters aimed at knowing who she will support as her successor in the October Presidential elections.
The president avoided calling any name of her choice candidate against the backdrop that any attempt to do so would be considered as breaching the electoral laws which forbids pre-election campaign.
She has repeatedly committed herself to obeying the constitution to quit after two terms rule, but her vice president Amb. Joseph Nyumah Boakai is heading the ruling Unity Party ticket in a bid for third term.
There have been reports that President Sirleaf who currently chairs regional body ECOWAS may secure some big jobs in the international cycle like the UN after her presidency, though there have been no official confirmation to the claims.
Before climaxing her farewell tour, Mrs. Sirleaf commended a level of self – initiated progress being made in areas of development and economic activities in southeast Liberia, telling citizens in that region that they have been moving on through private activities and farming, beside government’s support to them.
While breaking grounds on Friday, 24 March in Fish Town, River Gee County for a 80 kilometer asphalt concrete pavement road project to link the county capital to Karloken, President Sirleaf said she was very pleased with the work “we’re doing” as she went around counties in the southeast, though more still got to be done in the last few months.
The groundbreaking for the US$25m 80 kilometer road project in Fish Town is being funded by the African Development Bank or AFDB. It was the last major activity undertaken by President Sirleaf before climaxing her third leg of a farewell tour to the southeast.
In addition to the road project, President Sirleaf said she like to see light in River Gee County, and further voiced her commitment to seeing companies operating here to go beyond shipping out raw materials like rubber, logs and oil to consider production in the country, like furniture making, among others to create more jobs.
She emphasized that her government does not want to see logs or rubber going outside the country unless something like furniture [production] is added to the agreement.
She thanked the people of River Gee County for their patience, commitment and support to her government over the past years of her two terms.
By Winston W. Parley-Edited by Othello B. Garblah