NJ For Change

Friday, March 17, 2006

Liberian President Sirleaf’s Address Before Congress

Last Friday I posted about the New Jersey teacher, Beatrice Munah Sieh, tapped to be the head of Liberia’s police force by that country’s newly elected President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. This week I thought I’d follow up with one about President Sirleaf’s address to the U.S. Congress this past Wednesday.

President Sirleaf began her speech by remembering the strong historical ties between Liberia and the United States. She then thanked President Bush for helping to negotiate the 2003 exile of former President Charles Taylor, which ultimately brought about her election to office. She also thanked Congress for its support and the financial aid that helped lay the foundation for a durable peace, not only in Liberia, but in the whole West African region.
Thanks to President Bush, whose strong resolve and public condemnation and appropriate action forced a tyrant into exile, and thanks to you, the members of this august body, who spurred the international effort that brought blessed peace to our nation.

With your prayers and with your help, we will demonstrate that democracy can work, even under the most challenging conditions. We will honor the suffering of our people, and Liberia will become a brilliant beacon, an example to Africa and to the world of what the love of liberty can achieve.

We will strive to be America's success story in Africa, demonstrating the potential in the transformation from war to peace; demonstrating the will to join in the global fight against terrorism; demonstrating that democracy can prevail, demonstrating that prosperity can be achieved.
My county, the United States of America and my President, George W. Bush helped to make the free election of the first female African head of state possible. I am so very proud of them all and pray Liberia will at long last be at peace.
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