Monday, 17th October 2011
Members of the Press:
Welcome to this briefing session.
On behalf of the President, Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, we wish to extend our sincere thanks and appreciation to the Liberian people for turning out on Tuesday, October 11, 2011, to cast their votes in a free, fair, and transparent electoral process. We applaud Liberians for demonstrating political maturity during last weekís process and urge all to continue to remain peaceful and law-abiding as we go through the exercise.
We also, on behalf of the President, want to thank Liberians for the resounding show of appreciation demonstrated through their votes. The Presidentís strong showing throughout the country clearly demonstrates their appreciation for her able leadership and the progress the country has made over the last six years.
With the latest announcement on Sunday by the National Elections Commission of the official provisional results, it is all but clear that although, well in a clear lead, the President did not achieve the 50 + 1 percentage required to clinch a first-round victory. She nevertheless accepts the results as the will of the people. Her Excellency will, therefore, now be going back to the electorate, firstly to thank those who voted for her during the first round, and appeal to them to come out during the second round and lend her their support. Secondly, she will also meet with Liberians, especially those who may have voted otherwise, to try to win their support.
Over the period leading up to the second round, the President will listen to the concerns of those who did not go to vote, and find out what she needs to do to win their support. She will also find out from them where we fell short that caused them not to vote, and how those concerns can be addressed. The President will also lay out her agenda for the next six years Ė an agenda to sustain the peace and improve their welfare. She will call for their support through their vote, to help implement that agenda that will build on the progress that has already been made.
The President is convinced that the Liberian people have, through their support over the years, brought her this far and will carry her through the run-off.
I thank you.