President Sirleaf Receives Letters of Credence from EU, AU Ambassadors; Receives ECOWAS Election Monitoring Group Led by Former President John Mahama

Monday, 9th October 2017
President Sirleaf receives Letters of Credence from in-coming EU Ambassador Helene  Cave at her Foreign Ministry Office.
President Sirleaf receives Letters of Credence from in-coming EU Ambassador Helene Cave at her Foreign Ministry Office.
Monrovia, Liberia: President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has received the Letters of Credence of the Ambassadors of African Union and European Union to the Republic of Liberia, H.E. Ibrahim Mbaba Kamara of the African Union and Mrs. Helene Cave, Head of Delegation of the European Union respectively. 
According to an Executive Mansion release, the Liberian leader spoke during separate ceremonies in the Cabinet Room of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday, October 06, 2017. She recalled the long and friendly ties between the two institutions that have strengthened Liberia in many ways and promoted closer cooperation in the areas of trade investment, agriculture, security, education, roads, capacity development among others; reflecting on her position as Chairperson of the Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government and AU and ECOWAS significant role played in strengthening Liberia’s democracy among others. 
“As a founding Member State, Liberia continues to be a steadfast member ensuring that Liberia continue to promote African unity” I am pleased with these interactions, and perhaps more importantly, to explore further possibilities for more cooperation between our two institutions,” President Sirleaf told the new African diplomat accredited to Liberia.
She among others things expressed thanks and appreciation to the African Union and ECOWAS for their outstanding and positive role played in the fight against the deadly Ebola virus, which she described as “Great sacrifice” for Liberia. 
President Sirleaf also highlighted Liberia’s current development efforts and the progress she has made emphasizing the challenges Liberia has experienced for almost two decades including the outbreak of the deadly Ebola Virus Disease that took so many lives among others. She congratulated the diplomats for their preferment stressing the experience the diplomats will bring to the table to further consolidate the peace and development of Liberia and urged them to build on what their predecessors did. 
Touching on the October 10th Presidential and Representative elections, President Sirleaf said it will be defining event, which according to her will strengthen Liberia’s democracy and maintain the peace. She said though there may be some small problems, but generally things are good and prayed for peaceful elections. She reaffirmed her continued support to a peaceful, free, fair and transparent elections stressing: “We will continue to carry out our mandate until January 2018 when we hold inauguration for a new government.”
Talking about further support of Liberia’s post-war recovery, President Sirleaf recounted the EU and AU continued support and assistance to Liberia. She stressed that as Liberia works to further consolidate the democratic and economic gains achieved over the last decade, Liberia shall continue to forge meaningful partnership with the AU and EU as the country endeavors to attain rapid economic growth and development.
“The EU has supported Liberia through the UN support to the country’s peace process and also provided resources including direct budget support,” President Sirleaf indicated.
Speaking earlier, the new African Union and European Union diplomats, Mr. Ibrahim Mbaba Kamara, and Mrs. Helene Cave thanked President Sirleaf for the warm welcome and reception accorded them since their arrival in Liberia. “We have followed your work and what you have done for the Liberian people and Africa in particular.” 
They made particular reference to the outstanding leadership role played by President Sirleaf when she served as Chairperson of the Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government that peacefully ended the political impasse in The Gambia and her appointment as member of the Council of the Wise of AU adding: “Thank you Madam President; you are a great woman.” 
Both Ambassadors Kamara and Cave said they were aware of Liberia’s situation including the deadly Ebola virus disease and other challenges that slowed the gains Liberia made; highlighting the consideration of big investment for Africa that will boast development among others. 
They expressed the willingness to support the government’s development efforts. “We would like to assure Your Excellency that the AU and EU are willing to support Liberia’s development initiatives particularly in these crucial electioneering times, among others.
They noted that the EU and AU remain one of Liberia’s primary partners and that the relationship goes a long way stressing that both organizations have stood with Liberia since the rebuilding process of the country began at the end of the civil war. 
Meanwhile, President Sirleaf also received in audience former Ghanaian President, John D. Mahama who is leading the ECOWAS Monitoring Group to Liberia to facilitate and assess the October 10th Presidential and Representative elections. During the encounter, she expressed appreciation on behalf of the Liberian Government and people for ECOWAS' involvement in Liberia's peace initiatives and social economic development during and after the civil conflict.
She used the occasion to brief the former Ghanaian President on Liberia’s preparedness to conduct the election emphasizing the blissful delight of Liberians in these elections as compared to previous ones. She said though there may have been some small challenges but generally things are good. She said the cheerfulness of Liberians is driving force of these elections. She has reaffirmed her support for peaceful, free and fair elections. 
Earlier, former President Mahama thanked President Sirleaf for the warm welcome accorded him and team since their arrival in Liberia. He said he and his team are in Liberia to help Liberians achieve what they want stressing: “We are here to facilitate and access the elections.” He furthered we have already deployed observers across the country to ensure peaceful elections
Speaking further, he told President Sirleaf of his engagement with the leadership of the National Elections Commission (NEC) where they were adequately briefed and as well made some recommendations to ensure credible elections where all parties will be satisfied. Former President Mahama spoke of the need for meeting with other stakeholders to ensure a peaceful, free and credible election.
President Mahama made particular reference to the printing of excess bailout papers; the issue of security among others which according to him need to be addressed. He noted that his team will issue a statement immediately after the elections and later in days to come.