The United States Ambassador to Liberia Christine Elder, says the upcoming 2017 elections in Liberia provide an opportunity for Liberians to demand presidential candidates to put forward a vision for unity, peace, democracy, and accountability in the country.
Ambassador Elder has challenged electorates here to elect leader who will take the country toward that future as well as demonstrate to the world the continued stability of Liberia and adherence to rule of law.
Speaking Wednesday, 13 June at program marking the 240th Independence of the United States of America held at the U.S. Embassy near Monrovia, she said the United States remains a dedicated partner of Liberia, vowing “We will remain focused on helping Liberia develop its infrastructure, namely its electrical grid and its roads. President Obama’s Power Africa initiative will help expand the electrical power grid in Monrovia, while building government capacity and providing support to key energy sector institutions.’’
She said the Liberia Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Compact will improve road infrastructure as well as working with a dedicated group of international partners, many of whom are currently here, to support expansion of access to reliable and affordable electricity through the rehabilitation of the Mount Coffee Hydroelectric Plant.
Ambassador Elder said the U.S. will also remain focused in supporting Liberia’s effort to strengthen its healthcare system adding, “We continue to help Liberia’s resilient health system through the Global Health Security Agenda to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease threat.”
The ceremony was attended by high-level officials of the Liberian government led by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as well as members of the Diplomatic Corps, among others.
In response, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf appealed to the United States Government to help train and equip the police and the Liberian Military in the wake of UNMIL drawdown, stressing that the intervention of the U.S. will help to strength the army.
She said Liberia has remained committed to strengthening the historical tie between Liberia and America, while extending her deepest sympathy to the people of the United States for the loss of her citizens on 12 June 2016 and also condemned terrorism around the world.
President Sirleaf also expressed thanks and appreciation to the Government and people of the United States of America for strongly responding to the fight against Ebola here which helped to calm fears and restore the hope of Liberians.
She said the presence of U.S. troops, who were deployed strategically at various locations inside the country, coupled with the building of a state of the art mobile clinic to care particularly for health workers, reinforced this confidence, which saw Liberians breathed a sigh of relief.
“The people of Liberia are highly appreciative of the deep historic and cordial ties of friendship subsisting between our two countries, reflected in our extensive cooperation in many spheres as prominently demonstrated in the bounteous intervention of your government in the fight to eradicate the deadly Ebola virus from Liberia”, the Liberian leader expressed.
She extended heartfelt congratulations and best wishes to the Government and People of the United States, on behalf of the Government and People of Liberia, and in her own name, adding the Government and People of Liberia shall continue to work in close collaboration, harmony and understanding with the Government and People of the United States to improve the prosperity of the two nations in the forward march to a brighter future for the peoples of the two countries.
By Bridgett Milton -Editing by Jonathan Browne