Liberia: Sirleaf Renews Commitment to Upholding Religious Freedom, Joins Muslims for Prayers

Ellen-johnson-sirleaf(FRONTPAGE) President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has renewed her commitment to upholding religious freedom and equality, as enshrined in the Liberian Constitution, and has challenged all Liberians to see such freedom as essential for the common good of the nation. Unless Liberians can agree on this, she said, the country’s rebuilding process will be hampered because the religious community plays a vital role in its forward march.

According to an Executive Mansion release, President Sirleaf was speaking on Friday, August 16, at the 72nd Mosque, during a special Islamic Prayer Service held as part of celebrations marking a decade of sustained peace in Liberia since the signing, on August 18, 2003, in Accra, Ghana,of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

Whether one is Muslim or Christian, the President continued, let all Liberians see their diversity in serving God as their strength, and transform that strength into the power to unite and love one another that will lead to sustained peace and development. She paid tribute to all partners of Liberia that stood for peace, including ECOWAS, the African Union, the United Nations, the European Union, the United States of America and others.

Speaking earlier, the Chairman of the National Muslim Council of Liberia, Sheik Kafumba Konneh,praised President Sirleaf and her government for the farsightedness to observe and honor Liberia’s ten years of peace, which he said will serve as a guardian in upholding and sustaining the peace and progress made so far. He agreed that peace in Liberia today is given by God, and he called upon Liberians, irrespective of religion, to hold together in the service of God and country.

The Grand Mufti of the National Muslim Council of Liberia, Sheik Abubacar Sumaworo, prayed for lasting peace in the country, and urged all Liberians to hold together in reconciliation and let bygones be bygones -a slogan that had helped in restoring the peace being celebrated.

The Comprehensive Peace Agreement established a post-war National Transitional Government of Liberia, which was mandated to organize and hold general and presidential elections in 2005, and which resulted in the victory of the Unity Party led by Mrs. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

Among those at the Islamic Prayer Service were: Vice President Joseph N. Boakai, Sr.; Foreign Minister Augustine K. Ngafuan; the Minister of State without Portfolio, Conmany Wesseh; and Representative Sekou Kanneh of District No. 2, Montserrado County, where the 72nd Mosque is located.

Visit to CNDRA

Following the Prayer Service, President Sirleaf met with staff of the Center for National Documents and Records Agency – the Archives -in the wake of week-long agitation that led to repeated power outages and holding administrator shostage. She reminded employees of their responsibility to the State, and termed their actions as irresponsible and disrespectful to authority. She reminded them of the proper channel in seeking redress to their grievances.

This Agency is the nerve center of our country’s history, the President reminded them, and added that if the employees downplay its importance to the survival of country by their actions, they could not be patriotic citizens. Such actions would not be condoned anymore. “Anyone caught in a similar act again must be ready to face the full weight of the law,” the President warned. If the Director General, as you claim, is marginalizing you, there is a proper channel that you must follow in seeking redress rather than impeding normal workof this very important government agency, the President admonished.

She requested employees to channel their complaints to management through the office of Deputy Director General Alexander Saydee, for onward submission to Director General Philomena Bloh Sayeh before reaching the presidency.

Employees at CNDRA recently stopped normal electricity flow to the facility and blocked the door to the office of the Director General, thereby paralyzing normal activity.

Categories: Africa, Politics

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