President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has sent a Congratulatory Message to the President of the Swiss Confederation, Her Excellency Mrs. Doris Leuthard on that country’s National Day.
August 1st marks the annual celebration of Swiss National (or Confederation) Day. It was in 1891 that the date of Swiss national day was first decided upon, though it took over a hundred years before the Swiss decided to have a vote and give themselves the day off. Following the vote in September 1993, the day became an official national holiday in 1994.
The day was chosen because this was said to be the day, in 1291, on which the three forest cantons of Uri, Schwyz, and Unterwalden signed the Federal Charter on the Rütli field, near to Lake Lucerne. In fact, the charter does not specifically mention August 1st as the date, but instead refers to “at the beginning of the month of August 1291”.
The charter united the signatories in the struggle against Habsburg rule, the family then possessing the Duchy of Austria in the Holy Roman Empire. The signing of the charter has now become regarded as the foundation of Switzerland.
A Foreign Ministry release says, Mrs. Sirleaf stated that on this happy occasion commemorating the Anniversary of the Federal Charter of 1291 of Switzerland, “I am delighted to extend best wishes on behalf of the Government and people of Liberia and in my own name to Your Excellency, and through you to the Government and people of the Swill Confederation.”
Madam Sirleaf further told Mrs. Leuthard that it is Liberia’s wish that the people of the Swiss Confederation will experience continued happiness and renewed prosperity in the years ahead.
“Switzerland has consistently exhibited exemplary leadership in various spheres, including sustaining peace and economic prosperity as reflected in that country being ranked first among equals according to the Global Competitiveness Index (GCI),” President Sirleaf stressed.
The Liberian leader informed her Swiss counterpart that engagements between Liberia and Switzerland have also proven highly beneficial to the Liberian people, through the Swiss Development Cooperation (SDC).
The Swiss Confederation has contributed significantly to development initiatives within the Mano River Union. We are confident that the excellent relations we enjoy will continue to expand in strength and quality,” President Sirleaf stated.
The Liberian leader again congratulated Mrs. Leuthard, and her compatriots, including members of the Federal Council, on Swiss National Day, and renewed best wishes for her well-being and happiness; and for continued peace and prosperity of the Swiss Confederation.