21 November Press Briefing Notes

Monday, 21st November 2011

Members of the Press:

• The President wishes to acknowledge the messages of congratulations pouring in to her office from African and other world leaders, as well as bilateral and multilateral institutions throughout the world. Equally significant is the overwhelming volume of congratulatory messages by Liberians from all walks of life. The President appreciates the sentiments expressed in the goodwill messages, and assures all well-wishers that her commitment to fostering her development agenda remains unwavering.

Among the first batch of congratulatory messages were best wishes from the Mano River Union and leaders of the sub-regional grouping;  several African leaders, including the Chairman of the ECOWAS, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan; Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade; President Paul Biya of Cameroun; President Paul Kagame of Rwanda; United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, and former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, among others. Congratulatory messages were also sent by several world leaders, including President Hu Jintao of the People’s Republic of China, and  the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde.  A letter was also received from the Office of British Prime Minister David Cameron.

With the elections over, the President is now fully back on duty, focusing on the work the Liberian people have re-elected her to do.

• The President, as part of her reconciliation drive, has met with the Standard Bearer of the Congress for Democratic Change, Cllr. Winston Tubman.  The meeting was held last week in Monrovia, under the auspices of the Dean of the Trinity Cathedral, Dr. Herman B. Browne.
The President and Cllr. Tubman discussed issues relating to the just-ended general and presidential elections, and agreed that all Liberians must play their part to help sustain the peace the country has enjoyed over the past six years. There was a frank but cordial exchange of views between the two political leaders, aimed at fostering the spirit of reconciliation among all Liberians across party lines.

The President has also reached out to political leaders from all opposition parties, including the Vice Chairman of the Congress for Democratic Change, Mr. George Weah.

• Our attention has been drawn to reports in the media that the President has instructed all political appointees in her government to resign effective December 31, 2011.
We wish to state categorically that the reports are mere speculations.  It is a fact that political appointees serve at the will and pleasure of the President, and it is customary that when a new government comes into office, political appointees are expected to tender their resignation so as to give the President a free hand to appoint members of her Cabinet. However, the President has not yet issued any directive in this regard, as has been reported. If and when such a decision is made, the public will be duly informed.