Liberian President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf meeting with Development Partners prior to UN Conference

New York 9th July 2015, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has held discussions with a number of development partners ahead of the High -Level International Conference on Ebola slated for Friday at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.
President Sirleaf said the consultations were necessary to lay the foundations for international understanding of the challenges with which Liberia is confronted, inform about the government’s strategies towards the recovery process, and more importantly, to rally meaningful support and assistance for the implementation of the country’s Economic Stabilization and Recovery Plan (ESRP).
In a meeting with the Japanese Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Kazuyuki Najane, President Sirleaf thanked the Japanese Government for their contributions to combat the Ebola Virus in the three worst-affected countries.
She praised the cordial relations subsisting between the two countries which dates as far back as 1970, and the ongoing mobilization to begin the repairs and expansion of the Somalia Drive as well as concluding works on a ten mega watts generation which is expected to come online in February of 2016. She reminded the Japanese Vice Minister of the need to establish their Embassy in Liberia so as to strengthen direct contacts between the two countries.
For his part, the Japanese Vice Minister praised the excellent leadership of President Sirleaf which was exemplified in overcoming the deadly Ebola outbreak, and pledged the Japanese Government’s continuous engagements in the ongoing recovery and development of Liberia. He used the occasion to invite the Liberian leader to the Tokyo International Conference on Africa’s Development (TICA D), slated for 2016.
In a separate meeting, Hedge Fund Manager and Philanthropist James Harris Simon informed the Liberian President of the conclusion of arrangements to install two anesthesia machines in the country. He identified the effort as intended to fulfill promises made to contribute to the ongoing recovery in the health sector. The team is expected to arrive in the country next week.
Welcoming the initiative, President Sirleaf said the action will help to boost the health care sector in Liberia and identified the Redemption Hospital as an ideal location for one of the machines. She encouraged private investments in the country’s recovering health sector emphasizing the need to continue the transition from treatment to prevention.
At the same time, President Sirleaf held a brief meeting with the Undersecretary General and Executive Director of United Nations Joint Program on HIV/AIDS, Mr. Michel Sidibe who expressed support for Liberia’s recovery program and commended the Liberian Government and people for the bold and courageous stance against the Ebola.
Meanwhile , President Sirleaf has paid a courtesy call on the Undersecretary for Peacekeeping Operations Mr. Herve Ladsou who expressed confidence in Liberia’s transition process. He said the ongoing UNMIL drawdown testifies to the progress that Liberia continues to make in its development since the end of the conflict. He reiterated the decision of the Security Council to conduct the drawdown in a prudent manner to avoid undermining the gains made thus far.
President Sirleaf and the leaders of Guinea and Sierra Leone are in New York to participate in the UN-sponsored High-Level Conference to rally international support for the recovery processes in the three countries worst-affected by the unprecedented Ebola outbreak.

About Author: Edmund Neblett


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